Fairfield United Cricket Teams of Manchester is the SDC Wray & Nephew National T20 Cricket champions after beating two-time winners Race Course of Clarendon by four wickets on Sunday at the Port Rhoades Sports Club (Noranda Bauxite) in Discovery Bay St Ann.
In what was a battle between South Central teams, Race Course won the toss and elected to bat. However, they were in early trouble when opener Marcel Parchment was bowled the second ball of the innings by Leighton Leslie for a golden duck at 1 run for 1 wicket.
Wayne Davis was joined at the crease by Albert Gopie and Davis after hitting a six in the first over, added two more and a four in the second over delivered by Romario Marshall as the Clarendon team raced to 21 for 1 in two overs.
That was the only early joy they had as it went all wrong for the former champions when Davis was knocked over by Leslie for 17 and Erron Downer caught at deep square leg by Marshall with the score of 26 runs for 3 wickets in the third over.
Five balls later, the experienced Dwight Stewart who was the semi-final hero became Marshall’s only victim, bowled off the inside edge without troubling the scorers at 27 for 4 wickets.
The Manchester-based team then stamped their dominance with the ball picking up a further three wickets for nine runs as man of the final Sherdon Allen dismissed Gopie with his first ball of the innings for seven.
Batting at number nine, captain Krishmar Santokie blasted 21 from 11 with two fours and a six before he was Allen’s third wicket with the score of 62 runs for 9 wickets.
An 18 run last wicket partnership between Terrence West and Fitzroy Hunter held off the Fairfield bowlers before the innings was wrapped up at 80 in 15.3 overs by Jamie Merchant.
The wicket-takers were Leighton Leslie 3 for 19 runs, Allen 3 for 18 runs , while Merchant, Marshall and Reon Edwards had one each.
Needing 81 for victory, Fairfield lost openers Jermaine Morgan and Brian Clarke in the power play at 17 for 2 to Santokie and Romario Edwards for two and seven, respectively.
The hard-hitting Tristan Coleman was bowled by Edwards for seven at 21 for 3 in over number eight, bringing Allen and former West Indies under-15 representative Sanjay Walker to the crease, with Fairfield crawling to 29 for 3 in ten overs.
The pair added 32 runs for the fourth wicket, with Allen smashing two sixes and a four in his top score of 22 from 17 balls but was trapped in front by Santokie with Fairfield 53 for 4 and 28 runs away from victory.
Walker showed maturity at the other end even as Jamie Merchant departed for three at 67 runs for 5 wickets.
He eventually made 21 and even as he was dismissed by Chevonnie Grant, Fairfield were four runs away from the historic moment at 77 runs for 6 wickets.
Courtney Allen sealed the victory at 84 for 6 with a four as the Manchester-based team walked away with 1.5 million dollars playing their very first SDC T20 final and second from the parish to do so since South Stars.
Santokie had 2 wickets for 17 runs while Edwards bagged 2 for 8 from his four overs.
Allen, for his bowling figures and 22 runs was named man of the match, best bowler of the match and the most runs in the final.
Runners up Race Course pocketed $750,000.00 in what was their third appearance in a final.