Guyana Jaguars skipper Leon Johnson is hoping that his side can veer from a more than decade-long pattern of not being able to capture the Regional one-day title when they come up against the Combined Campuses and Colleges Marooners in the Regional Super 50 final today.
Johnson, who spearheaded Jaguars’ feisty showing during their one-wicket semi-final win over the Jamaican Scorpions on Thursday, told Stabroek Sports that his unit is pretty relaxed and up for the task at hand.
“The mood is great. We had a recovery session today (Friday), and the guys are still on a high,” Johnson said.
Jaguars, who are well led by the 31-year-old as is constantly pointed out by a number of the pundits in the commentary box, will require a similar level of tactical astuteness and leadership when they face the Carlos Braithwaite-led side, brimming with confidence after trouncing the mighty Trinidad and Tobago Red Force on Friday in the second semi-final.
“CCC won’t be an easy opposition, and we need to execute our plans come Sunday,” Johnson acknowledged.
Meanwhile, Jaguars’ semi-final win on Thursday during which Johnson scored 101 – his maiden Regional limited overs century – stimulated the interest of many who were quite pleased with the way he accumulated his runs.
The knock was also very much fulfilling for the man himself.
“I was very satisfied with my effort, taking the situation of the game into context. 70 for 3 chasing 273 and scoring a hundred to help the team to victory was pleasing.”
Further recounting the particulars of an innings where he showed steely resolve to pilot his side into today’s final, Johnson recalled overcoming a bit of nerve and a patch of indifferent form to give his team an opportunity to claim the elusive one day title.
“A bit of pressure was there. There are always nerves around in the knock out games, and I just felt if the opportunity presented itself I had to put up my hand.
“I felt that I let myself and team down in Trinidad by getting to 30 odd two times in five innings then being dismissed softly, something I wasn’t gonna do last night[Thursday].”