Amini Park will host the Grand Final of the Isuzu National One Day Cup this Sunday between Isuzu Black and Isuzu Red at 10 am.
After five pool rounds Isuzu Black finished on top of the ladder and go through as favorites although they did show some indifferent form in the later stages of the competition. Isuzu Red were building in momentum, stringing together wins up until the last pool game where they suffered a heavy defeat to Isuzu Black.
This all leads to a tantalising Grand Final, will experience shine through with Isuzu Black batting order consisting of Barras Captain Assad Vala, inform dynamo Lega Siaka as well as Simon Atai, player of the match in the last round. They also have the luxury of Gaudi Toka with both bat and ball and the big Barra, left arm quick, Nosaina Pokana!
Isuzu Red have plenty of talent in their own line up too, leading the way is the competition leading run scorer Tony Ura. They have quality allrounders in Barras vice captain CJ Amini and Hiri Hiri who will have an impact in the game. Their bowling spearhead is Barra Damien Ravu who has already picked up a five for in the tournament.
Both sides have had valuable contributions throughout the tournament from the up and coming players from outside of the Barras squad. Daure Lohia has been a proven wicket taker for the Reds and ex Barra Dogodo Bau has been consistently scoring runs at the top of the order, or will one of the other young players like Hila Vare, stand up in the biggest game?
Isuzu Black had Barras development player Michael Charlie find form in the last few games and have had former Garamut Boge Arua consistently taking wickets and scoring handy lower order runs. The youngest player in the competition, 17yr old Malcom Apporo has played a couple of very good innings, will he do it again under the pressure of the final.
National Coach, Carl sandri is expecting a close game “ These two sides certainly deserve to be playing off for the Isuzu Cup, Isuzu Black are favorites based on tournament results but anything can happen in a Grand Final . Both sides have a good mixture of experience and promising youth, so it should be a cracker. Personally, I would like to see a tight game and have the boys under pressure, it would serve us well for our preparation towards the World Cup and obviously be exciting to watch!”
Tournament Director, Rodney Maha, speaking on the grand final was in agreement with Sandri “ The Isuzu Cup this year has ran well, it was always challenging under the current conditions and to reach Sunday’s Grand Final is a credit to the whole team working behind the scenes. Grand Finals are difficult to reach and even harder to win so the game should be very interesting. I too think it will be close but wish both teams the best of luck and we will see on Sunday who gets to lift the Isuzu Cup”.
After a week’s break and seeing off the Barras as they embark on a long tour leading up to the T20 World Cup, Cricket PNG will resume activities with the women’s Isuzu Cup. This is an important part of their own preparation towards the EAP and Global World Cup Qualifiers later in the year.