Cricket

Russell laments lack of home support at Florida venue

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

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FORT LAUDERDALE, Florida (CMC) — Jamaica Tallawahs captain Andre Russell has lamented the lack of home advantage provided by the Central Broward Regional Park Stadium, following his side's heavy defeat to Guyana Amazon Warriors in the Caribbean Premier League Saturday night.

Tallawahs played their first two home games at Sabina Park and hosted the other three at the venue here located in south-eastern Florida.

However, Saturday's contest felt little like a home advantage for the Tallawahs as Amazon Warriors were greeted with vocal support from spectators, something that was not lost on an “upset” Russell.

“I'm very unhappy at the moment. The guys fought tonight (Saturday). I think when you have a good thing going and you actually lose a game, sometimes these things happen in cricket where you just have to pick yourself up and try and get stronger and grow from strength to strength,” the all-rounder explained.

“But I think based on tonight's game, it wasn't like a home game. It didn't feel that way. Every boundary, every wicket [the reaction] was going Guyana's way. [Shimron] Hetmyer came out and played some good shots and just the crowd being at his back, it kind of gave him a pump and it shouldn't be like that.”

He continued: “I think we should have that home advantage when a guy hits a boundary, he hears silence. That's how home advantage is supposed to be. It's not supposed to be in conditions where you have to wonder.

“You [as the home team] hit a four, you hit a six you're not hearing nothing because Guyana's crowd is out here and they want to see Guyana do well.”

The 21-year-old Hetmyer slammed exactly 100 off 49 balls to leave Tallawahs chasing 210 for victory. However, their batsmen failed to cope with a difficult and a hostile crowd, and crumbled to 138 all out in the 17th over, losing by 71 runs.

Russell said the Tallawahs had found it difficult both when they bowled and batted, and conceded it had impacted the team's motivation.

“Guys were upset, I was upset. When I got off the field I was throwing shoes and everything around the changing room … this is how upsetting these things can be,” Russell said.

“You want to know that the crowd is behind you on your home turf so if we go to Barbados we see a sea of blue then we expect that. If you're playing a home game you want to feel the home advantage — if you get a wicket you hear a loud cheer. It gives the bowlers energy, even if you're tired.

“A lot of Guyanese live here, a lot of Trinis live here and I think that's already a proper home advantage. I hope that we can just win the next two games.”

Tallawahs also lost to reigning champions Trinbago Knight Riders on Sunday. They next face Barbados Tridents at the Florida venue tomorrow.

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