TAROUBA, Trinidad (CMC) - Captain Darren Bravo carved out a brilliant career-best unbeaten hundred to surpass 6,000 List A runs as Trinidad and Tobago Red Force romped to a convincing 78-run victory over Barbados Pride to finish top of the Regional Super50 Cup standings.
In the final preliminary game of the tournament at the Brian Lara Stadium here Sunday, the 34-year-old left-hander struck a polished 139 not out off 113 deliveries to fire the hosts up to a competitive 293 for six off their 50 overs.
Veteran off-spinner Sunil Narine, who on Sunday called time on his international and domestic 50-over career, then strangled Pride with a magical 10-over spell of four for 13, to send them crashing to 215 all out in the 48th over.
Left-arm spinner Akeal Hosein supported with three for 31 from his 10 overs as Pride stumbled repeatedly throughout their run chase despite 48 from Roston Chase and 40 from number nine Akeem Jordan, eventually losing their last seven wickets for 100 runs.
The victory ensured Red Force finished the preliminary stage unbeaten and at the summit with 49 points, setting up a semi-final showdown with fourth-placed Guyana Harpy Eagles next Wednesday.
"We've been playing consistent cricket, we've been clinical, sometimes there's been a hiccup here and there, but that's how the game goes sometimes," Bravo said afterwards.
"We're playing as a team, everyone is happy for each and every member of the team success, which is most important."
Pride, meanwhile, ended third on 37 points and will take on second-placed Leeward Islands Hurricanes (44) in next Thursday's second semi-final.
Their defeat was their third in seven games of an inconsistent campaign, and Captain Shai Hope urged renewed focus on the semi-final ahead.
"Sometimes you have to give credit where it is due. I thought Darren played a very good innings today," he said.
"We obviously could have bowled a little bit better, especially in the back end, but there's a few areas we can definitely clean up on."
He added: "I think [every total] is gettable. As long as one opposition gets it, I think that we can always chase down anything.
"We didn't start as well as we would like so that obviously put us back in the middle there.
"So [there are] things to look at to improve on for the next game, but again, we just have to learn from these mistakes and carry on."
Sent in, Red Force got a steady 65-run, opening stand from Kjorn Ottley (36) and Tion Webster (28) before Bravo arrived at number three to control the innings.
He struck nine fours and seven sixes, reaching his 50 off 46 balls at the end of the 31st over before completing his ninth List A hundred off 94 deliveries in the 45th over.
In the process, Bravo moved his List A runs tally to 6,102.
"For me, it was just a matter of going out there and continue building on the foundation set by both Tion Webster and Kjorn Ottley," said Man-of-the-Match Bravo.
"We keep saying in the team someone in the top four needs to bat through the entire innings. I think today was my day and I am happy I was able to execute for my team."
In reply, Hosein wreaked havoc at the top of the order, knocking over openers Kyle Mayers (12) and Zachary McCaskie (14) in the sixth over to leave Pride on 32 for two.
Shamarh Brooks, who struck 33, put on 40 for the third wicket with Hope (18) and a further 43 for the fourth wicket with Chase, who faced 46 deliveries and counted five fours and two sixes.
Pride looked in good shape at 115 for three in the 24th over but Narine went to work on the innings, striking twice in quick succession as Pride lost three wickets for two runs in the space of eight deliveries.
Tottering on 117 for six in the 25th, Pride needed a special effort in order to come back but Narine delivered two additional blows when he had Dominic Drakes taken at first slip in the 29th and Chase trapped lbw two overs later.
Jordan flexed his muscle to clobber four fours and three sixes in a 47-ball knock which fuelled a 56-run, ninth-wicket stand with Jomel Warrican (19 not out), but the result was never really in doubt