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SUNRISE/FL – Karachi Kings and Mumbai Indians player Shurfane Rutherford scored a wonderful unbeaten 69 to take 22 Yards to the final of the US Open T20 tournament for the first time.
His effort knocked out 2017 champions Somerset Cavaliers with Andre Russell on board. Batting first Somerset found the going tough against the spinners as the pitch continued to play slow and low. As the tournament has progressed the pitches because of wear and tear have progressively helped the spinners and this was the case as Guyana Amazon Warriors spinner Ashmead Nedd returned 2/17 and former West Indies leg-spinner Devendra Bishoo 2/31. Asad Ali also chipped in with 2/27.
Somerset with their powerful batting line up was reduced to 76/6 as only opener Kennar Lewis found his range. He scored 41 off 31 balls with four sixes and three fours.
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Later on, they owed their final score of 132/8 to former West Indies player Shawn Findlay who counted 41 not out off 28 balls with four sixes and two fours. He and former West Indies fast bowler Fidel Edwards produced an unbeaten 30-run partnership for the ninth wicket.
With a fighting score, Somerset then grabbed wickets of Trevon Griffith and Ahad Malek with 28 runs on the board but Rutherford joined forces with Jamaican Andre McCarthy to register an unbroken partnership of 108 runs for the third wicket that sealed the deal.
Rutherford who grew up on a diet of spin in his home country Guyana was able to take the fight to Somerset and his 69 came off 47 balls with five sixes and three fours.
McCarthy the smooth right-hander finished with 35 not out off 42 balls with three hits to the boundary. With the win, 22 Yards will now await the winner of the second semi-final between US All Stars and Altanta Param Veers to see who they play in the championship match on Sunday.
SCORES: Somerset Caviliers 132/8 (20) (Kennar Lewis 41, Shawn Findlay 41no, Ashmead Nedd 2/17, Devendra Bishoo 2/31, Asad Ali 2/27) vs 22 Yards 136/2 (18.1) (Shurfane Rutherford 69no, Andre McCarthy 35no) – 22 Yards won by 8 wkts.