RED FORCE captain Darren Bravo has hailed the triple spin threat of Sunil Narine, Akeal Hosein and Yannic Cariah, after a 114-run victory over Guyana Harpy Eagles on Saturday propelled the hosts to the top of the CG United Super50 standings.
At the Brian Lara Cricket Academy in Tarouba, Red Force posted a healthy 290 for eight, led by late pyrotechnics from Cariah (71 not out off 48 balls), and half-centuries from opener Kjorn Ottley (52) and Bravo (51).
Cariah returned with the ball to dismantle the Guyana reply, claiming five wickets for 34 runs to bowl out the visitors for 176 in 33.4 overs.
The leg-spinner wrecked the Guyana chase with the big wicket of Sherfane Rutherford, who top scored with 30 off 28 balls (two fours, two sixes). He then cleaned up the lower order for his first List A five-for in a decade.
Narine was his usual frugal self with his mystery off-spin taking two for 18 in 6.4 overs while Hosein took one for 29.
After the victory, Bravo said he was delighted to be able to have a leg-spinner, off-spinner and left-arm orthodox at his disposal.
He said, "I think their line and length is superb. Obviously, Sunil is world class; having him in our team gives us that level of confidence. Yannic has put in a lot of work. He's already on the West Indies team so that gives him confidence. We all know Akeal is international as well.
"It's just a matter of them going on and executing their plans. Before this particular game, we had a very, very good team meeting. It's just a matter of going out there and executing."
Cariah said bowling alongside Narine and Hosein makes his life easier. "It's very important to have those guys in the team. They keep it tight and when I come to bowl, I express myself and try to get people out."
Bravo described the overall effort as clinical, adding "I thought the guys took responsibility – each and every single player."
He said the 290 runs was about ten to 15 shy of their ideal total, but "we were quietly confident with out bowling line-up." He said Cariah's knock, which included seven fours and two sixes, was exceptional.
Cariah, 31, who made his international debut last year, thanked God for his Man-of-the-Match performance, but was even more delighted that Red Force were able to get the result.
"The most important thing is that we win the game. I play cricket to win. It was a total team effort on the day. I thank God for the performance I had today, and it's just to keep getting better."
With nine wickets in two matches in the tournament, Cariah spoke about his preparation for the Super50.
"I just try to work on my rhythm. I work on my run-up and keep repeating my action, just a clear mindset of how I want to release the ball."
Despite his bright start with the ball, the Coalmine native said he takes great pride with the willow. "I love my batting. I always have a bat in my hand. I always class myself as a batsmen instead of a bowler, but my role is trying to be a genuine all-rounder."
Losing captain Veerasammy Permaul said his batsmen and bowlers were not up to scratch, but blamed the defeat on the latter. "We weren't able to pick up wickets in the middle. Bravo batted well in the middle and Cariah came at the back end and made a score.
"In batting, we had a good start and in the middle we throw the wickets away and didn't have the momentum...
"The most important thing is to spend time at the crease. If we could take a leaf out of Bravo book, he spent time at the crease and showed that spending time at the crease (allows you to) get a good score."
Red Force next face Leeward Islands in a day-night fixture on Thursday in Tarouba.