Caribbean Premier League
All-round Smith stars for Barbados
A maiden CPL fifty and two key wickets saw Steve Smith play a key role in a CPL thriller
23 August 2018, 12:08 PM AEST
Steve Smith has starred with his maiden Caribbean Premier League half-century and two wickets for the Barbados Tridents as they pulled off a miracle win against the Jamaica Tallawahs.
Barbados won by two runs in the CPL's final match of the tournament's Florida leg, a win that seemed unlikely after Jamaica made a fast start with the bat while Barbados fumbled four straight-forward catch opportunities.
Smith made 63 from 44 balls, then added 2-19 from three overs to play a key role in the victory.
The Australian, batting at No.4, found himself at the crease in the sixth over as the Tridents top order faltered, and set about rebuilding the innings with Barbados native Shai Hope.
The pair put on 103 to resurrect the Barbados innings before Hope was bowled by Andre Russell.
Smith played a combination of classical and typically unorthodox strokes, mixing inside-out lofted cover drives with flat-batted tennis-style forehand whacks.
He took to Adam Zampa's leg spin, with the former Australia captain smashing him for two consecutive sixes: one driven over deep extra cover in a piece of exquisite footwork and timing, the next more brute force to muscle one just over the long-off fielder's outstretched hands.
A third six came in the 18th over as Smith drove off the back foot to send a Russell delivery over point.
He became Russell's second wicket in the final over, caught in the deep trying to smash a fourth six. He swung so hard at the shot one hand came off the handle and his bat broke the wicket in his arcing follow-through. Smith could have been out hit wicket while the official scorecard recorded him as caught.
Jamaica had raced to 80 without loss after eight overs before Smith made an impact with his leg-spin.
He had Johnson Charles caught at deep mid-wicket after miscuing a slog, and then later in the same over had New Zealander Glenn Phillips caught behind, a decision that left the batsman considerably unimpressed after the umpire took a long time considering the verdict.
Smith should have had a third wicket in his third over when Raymon Reifer fumbled a catch near the boundary and palmed it over the rope for six.
Jamaica only lost one more wicket, but with Russell padded up on the sideline and his head in his hands, Ross Taylor and David Miller were unable to see the Tallawahs home.