CPL

'Sometimes you have to back your players' - TKR skipper Pollards defends decision to bowl struggling Neesham

By September 18, 2019
Jimmy Neesham (L) and head coach of Trinbago Knight Riders Brendon McCullum. Jimmy Neesham (L) and head coach of Trinbago Knight Riders Brendon McCullum.

Trinbago Knightriders captain Kieron Pollard has defending bowling a struggling Jimmy Neesham at the death in a thrilling super over loss against St Kitts and Nevis Patriots on Tuesday night.

The New Zealand cricketer had a night to forget, his four-over spell going for a record most runs conceded with 68.  On his birthday, the 29-year-old got off to horrid start after being punished with 31 taken off his first over by top-order Patriots batsman Evin Lewis.  Lewis and the Patriots were in pursuit of 216 and got within touching distance of the target, largely in part to a 64 runs 30 balls cameo from Carlos Brathwaite.  

 The Patriots needed 19 from the final over and Neesham, who bowled at the death for the Black Caps during the Cricket World Cup earlier this year, bowled it but conceded 18 runs as the home side's Rayad Emrit (21 off 11 balls) and Alzarri Joseph (7 off 3 balls) forced a Super Over.

Needing five to win from the last ball, Emrit was fortunate with a four that flew to the boundary after a leading edge and the scores were tied after a dramatic final over that featured misfields, overthrows and a no-ball for height from Neesham.

“Obviously in hindsight, I could have bowled that last over, bowling two overs with sweat on my back but couple games before that he had done it for us bowling the last over.  Yes, he wasn’t having a great day but sometimes you have to back your players and I backed him to do it,” Pollard said.

Pollard also had high commendation for man-of-the-match Brathwaite, who scored 17 in the super over, before taking the ball to restrict the Knightriders to 5 for 1.

“I could have easily backed myself and taken the initiative like Carlos did but it’s great to see Carlos stepping up and taking that mantle and taking the team on his shoulders."

 

 

Kwesi Mugisa

Kwesi has been a sports journalist with more than 10-years’ experience in the field. First as a Sports Reporter with The Gleaner in the early 2000s before he made the almost natural transition to becoming an editor. Since then he has led the revamp of The Star’s sports offering, making it a more engaging and forward-thinking component of the most popular tabloid newspaper in the Caribbean.

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