AN outstanding all-round performance from captain Stafanie Taylor led a resilient Jamaica team to a tense 16-run victory over Trinidad & Tobago in the final of the inaugural Regional Women's Twenty20 (T20) Tournament at Sabina Park yesterday.
The prolific West Indies player made an undefeated half-century in a composed exhibition of batting as Jamaica limped to a modest 101-5 off their allotted 20 overs on a Sabina surface offering even pace and bounce.
Taylor, the ICC No 1-ranked all-rounder, then produced figures of 4-9 off four overs with her off-spin as Trinidad & Tobago were dismantled for 85 in the 19th over.
The elated Jamaican skipper, who is the first and only century-maker in the women's T20 format, told the Jamaica Observer that though the other batters underperformed, she has not been overwhelmed by the responsibility.
"I'm extremely happy to win this competition. It's the first regional T20 tournament and it's good for us winning at home.
"I was a bit concerned (because it was not a big total), but I know we have one of the best bowling attacks in the region. I always felt if we put the ball in the right spots we could defend that total.
"Throughout the tournament it was a major concern that the other batters haven't done so well, but I knew that if I batted through it would make a difference. I knew it would boost them if I batted well. The responsibility doesn't pressure me because I love to bat," she said.
Scores: Jamaica 101-5 (20 overs); Trinidad & Tobago 85 (18.2 overs)
Earlier, Jamaica won the toss and elected to bat, but aside from Taylor's 45-run first-wicket stand with Jodian Morgan (22), the batting failed to offer substantial resistance to the steady T&T attack.
Taylor ended on 57 not out to complete the tournament as the leading runscorer with an aggregate of 409 runs in eight matches.
Medium-pacer Stacy-Ann King claimed 2-12 off three overs, while spinner Gaitri Seetahal took 1-7.
In reply, Trinidad & Tobago faltered badly after losing prolific opener Amanda Samaroo (15) and West Indies star batter Deandra Dottin at 56-4.
Samaroo, who was dropped on nought by Taylor at first slip off medium-pacer Karla Cohen, lost concentration after a 20-minute rain delay and was stumped by wicketkeeper Tameka Sanford off spinner Vanessa Watts.
Dottin was dismissed by left-arm spinner Shanel Daley when the alert Sanford held onto a thin edge.
The rest of the batting, except Britney Cooper, who made a competent-looking 18, was unable to cope with the guile of Taylor, Daley (3-13) and Watts (2-14).
In the third-place play-off match at the venue, Barbados recorded a seven wicket win over Guyana. Scores: Guyana 88-7 (20 overs); Barbados 89-3 (17.3 overs).
At Kensington Park, St Vincent and the Grenadines sealed fifth spot after beating Grenada by 20 runs. Scores: St Vincent and the Grenadines 116-4 (20 overs); Grenada 96-3 (20 overs).
In the battle for seventh place, St Lucia edged to a nine-run win over Dominica in the early match at Kensington. Scores: St Lucia 97-7 (20 overs); Dominica 88-8 (20 overs)