Patrick Noone analyses Glenn Phillips’ innings as Jamaica Tallawahs make a winning start in Tarouba
Glenn Phillips is a batsman who has flown somewhat below the radar on the T20 cicuit. He hasn’t featured in New Zealand’s T20I team since November 2018 and, as yet, the bumper deals in the majority of overseas leagues have eluded him. At just 23, time is very much on his side, and performances like his 44 from 29 balls against St Lucia Zouks will only raise his profile further.
Because it’s in the CPL where Phillips is king. He is starting his fourth season for Jamaica Tallawahs and only his compatriot Colin Munro has scored more runs than him in that time. Three of his top five T20 scores have been for the Tallawahs, including a century against St Kitts and Nevis Patriots two years ago.
Phillips might not have quite reached those heights in his first appearance of the season today, but it was nonetheless an authoritative, clinical knock that pushed his side towards a winning position after a sticky start.
As the wickets of Chadwick Walton and Nicholas Kirton fell around him, Phillips kept his cool after a slow start of his own, scoring just eight runs from his first 11 balls, despite attacking six of them. He picked his moment to let loose, identifying Zahir Khan as the man to go after.
Phillips has taken a liking to left-arm wrist-spin in the past – his career record against Tabraiz Shamsi is 1-34 from 23 balls – and in the second ball of the sixth over, he latched on to a full toss from the Zahir to score his first boundary through cover. He went one better from the very next ball, clearing the rope in the same area of the ground to move his score to 18 off 13 in the blink of an eye.
That over had got Phillips going and he rammed home the initiative even further in the next over as Kesrick Williams was taken for 6, 4, 6 in three totally different areas of the ground.
Throughout his innings, Phillips attacked 70% of the balls he faced, the highest of any batsmen to face at least ten balls, besides Asif Ali. Yet his false shot percentage was just 17%, the second lowest figure behind Andre Russell, who attacked far less (52%).
Phillips provided a controlled aggression that simultaneously dragged his side out of the mire from where they were at 13-2 and laid the platform for the explosive engine room of Asif, Russell and Carlos Brathwaite to tee off at the back end of the innings.
This was both teams’ first outings in this year’s CPL and the Tallawahs looked by far the more accomplished and were worthy winners. Their long tail might cause them headaches in matches to come, but if Phillips can continue to bat in the manner he did today, he will surely mitigate most of those concerns for this talent-filled XI.
Patrick Noone is a CricViz analyst