Former West Indies pace bowler Franklyn Rose believes the development of the regional team has been hampered by a ‘chop and change’ mentality with batsman Shai Hope being just the most recent victim.

The decision to drop the 27-year-old Hope, after his recent monumental struggles, has divided public opinion.  While some believe the player could benefit from time away from the team to address potential confidence and technical issues, others believe the batsman would best be served staying within the system, even if he remains outside of the first team.

Rose, for his part, believes with the team currently in rebuilding mode, nothing will be gained from the talented player being pushed out of the squad at this point.

“They’re rebuilding, how are you going to get rid of the guy (Hope) when you are rebuilding.  He’s one of the brightest talents,” Rose told the Mason and Guest radio program.

 “West Indies cricket is rebuilding.  You cannot chop and change while rebuilding.  Shai Hope, one of the best talents in the Caribbean, you just drop him like that.  I would have brought him on tour, got him to play a few of the practice games.  Even if he doesn’t get to play Test matches.  What cricket is he going to play now to get back his confidence?”

West Indies batting all-rounder Rovman Powell has targeted beefing up his bowling as a means to improve his status as a complete all-rounder.

There can be no doubt that the 27-year-old can be absolutely devasting with the bat, which he has proven on several occasions in recent years. In the Caribbean Premier League (CPL), however, Powell also showed some ability with the ball.  He claimed 5 wickets in both the 2017 and 2018 seasons, along with quite a few economic spells.

The player has, however, not been as successful with the ball recently, going without a wicket in the CPL this season.  It is an area he has targeted for improvement.

“I’m a batting all-rounder, for the last couple of years my bowling has fallen off.  It’s something I have sat down and thought about,” Powell said from the team’s training base in New Zealand on Thursday.

“It’s just for me now to work on my bowling and strengthen all three aspects of my cricket," he added.

One area of his bowling he would specifically like to strengthen is how much pace he can generate.

“To get that ex-factor I think I have to bowl a little bit faster.  Looking at the other all-rounders around the world and around the Caribbean, they tend to bowl a little bit faster than I do.  The slower balls and the variation will always come, but you know over the course of my career I have to come up with ways to bowl a little faster and that will give me an edge.”

 

 

 

West Indies legend Courtney Walsh has cautioned up and coming fast bowler Oshane Thomas that being in top physical shape is a key component to success on the international cricket stage.

Thomas burst on the scene during the 2017 Caribbean Premier League (CPL), where the fast bowler regularly clocked over 90 miles per hour.  That kind of promise quickly landed the 23-year-old straight into the senior Windies set-up, where he has so far played 20 ODIs and 12 Twenty20 Internationals.

Things have, however, not been going smoothly for the player since then with bouts of indifferent form leading to a less impressive showing in subsequent seasons of the CPL.  In 2018, Thomas finished with the second most wickets on 18, but the following season had just 9 and none in the 2020 edition, where he had limited playing time.  Some believe the 23-year-old’s dip in form has coincided with some amount of weight gain.  The player is indeed seemingly several pounds heavier than when he burst onto the scene three years ago.

“I think he has a lot of work to do.  He has to get himself back in shape,” Walsh told the Mason and Guest radio program.

 "He has the raw ability, talent, and pace but he has to reign himself back in and I had a very serious talk with him. If he wants his career to take off and be consistent, then he has to get himself back in shape, in fighting condition,” he added.

“That's one of the challenges that we had.  A lot of people probably don’t know that behind the scenes we had to do things to stay at the top of our game.  If it means running that extra lap, probably that extra bit of bowling in the nets or going to the gym.  Whatever it takes for you to be able to maintain that fighting weight and good body fitness for longevity.”

 

Barbados Cricket Director Stephen Leslie has called on regional cricket custodians to do more to ensure top local T20 talent is not cast aside, in light of limited places in the Caribbean Premier League (CPL).

The recently concluded edition of the tournament, which was won by the Trinbago Knight Riders, did feature some of the region’s emerging talent.  In fact, a list of 20 young players was, as is required, named ahead of the tournament and several players featured prominently throughout the competition. 

The list included Alick Athanaze, Joshua Bishop, Leniko Boucher, Keacy Carty Roland Cato, Joshua da Silva, Dominic Drakes, Amir Jangoo, Nicholas Kirton, Mikyle Louis, Kirk McKenzie, Kimani Melius, Ashmead Nedd, Jeavor Royal, Jayden Seales, Keagan Simmons, Kevin Sinclair, Shamar Springer, Bhaskar Yadram and Nyeem Young. 

There are, however, a few players who remain outside this group.  Leslie pointed to the example of Roshon Primus who represented Trinbago Knight Riders in the two previous seasons.  Leslie believes the idea of another country-based T20 tournament could be considered.

“The CPL has a franchise model, which in my view, has not been able to expose the best T20 cricketer that ply their trade in the Caribbean,” Leslie told the Mason and Guest radio program.

“I’ll give an example of Barbados.  Barbados started a T20 domestic tournament back in 2009.  Every year there are some players that contribute very well.  Roshon Primus, for example, does extremely well, but the opportunity for Roshon Primus to be selected, I’m not sure there is that level of transparency,” he added.

“Simply put, you can have young U-19 West Indies players given an opportunity to make the franchises because they were on a global stage. You can have the West Indies emerging players from the Super50, did very well, given an opportunity to play T20 cricket.  But what happens to local Barbadian T20 players, Trinidadians, and those across the region who ply their trade and play consistently well in their domestic tournament.  I believe there is very little for those persons.”

Caribbean Premier League (CPL) Director of Operations, Michael Hall, has hailed the recently concluded edition of the tournament as a huge success, in light of the obstacles presented by the COVID-19 pandemic.

This year’s staging, which had initially been in doubt due to the global coronavirus outbreak, was eventually staged in Trinidad and Tobago in a biosecure environment, without fans.  The Trinbago Knight Riders created history by being the first team to claim the title without losing a match.

Things, however, did not go off without a hitch.  Many spectators took issue with the standard of play at the low-scoring tournament, while many players struggled with the quarantine requirements and conditions of the heavily used pitches.  Hall, while accepting that there were challenges and admitting that he was eager to see things return to normal, believed things went reasonably well.

“I think by any measure, this year, the Caribbean Premier League was a resounding success for the simple reason that we were able to do what we did, stage the tournament successfully, have some decent cricket played despite the fact that a number of cricketers would have been rusty,” Hall told the Mason and Guest radio program.

 “To pull it together, to stage it, to have it successfully completed without anyone testing positive for the virus throughout that entire almost eight-week period, anyone that tries to tell me the Caribbean Premier League was not a success this year, I am having none of it,” he added.

Despite no fans being in the stadium, this season's CPL was the most viewed tournament in the history of the competition.

West Indies legendary fast bowler Sir Andy Roberts has criticised the recent pitches used in the Caribbean Premier League (CPL) for offering significant assistance to otherwise average bowlers.

The surfaces at the recently concluded Caribbean Premier League (CPL) were at the centre of attention for most of the campaign.  Many argued that the condition of the surface played a significant part in scores that were much lower than usual.  In the end, the tournament was won by the home team, Trinbago Knight Riders who often did not seem to struggle on the surface.  In fact, the Knight Riders ended with a perfect record.  Also not finding fault with the surface, however, was the majority of the bowlers.

“I know we blame COVID for everything but this is not one of the things we should try to blame on COVID…we are making bowlers look 10 times as good as they are and especially in the spin department,” Roberts recently said on Antigua’s Good Morning Jojo Radio program.

The competition was held in unusual circumstances this season, with all the matches held in Trinidad and Tobago due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.  Roberts, however, still believes the pitches, notwithstanding, could be better prepared.

“You knew about three or four months ago that you’re going to have this tournament in Trinidad, one country, but you have two different facilities that you are going to play at so arrangements should be made to get all the pitches up to a certain standard,” he added.

“When I say all, I mean the entire square, because you can’t just use two pitches for the number of matches you are going to be playing on them.”

Trinbago Knight Riders man-of-the-match Lendl Simmons revealed that he was spurred on by the previous season’s failure and determined to see them over the line this time around.

In the end, it proved to be a reversed performance of sorts for Simmons, when considering the Knight Riders' previous Caribbean Premier League (CPL) campaign.  Last season, he started the competition well but went missing in the later rounds.  His 1 run against the Tridents, in the semi-finals, perhaps set the stage for the team's loss.

One season later, after a poor start to the competition, Simmons is free to bellow his redemption song.  His 54 from 44 in the semi-final and 84 from 49 in the final game, played a big role in the Knight Riders not only lifting the title but achieving a historic unbeaten season.

“Last year I did well in the prelims and when it came to the semi-finals, I didn’t get a score and we ended up losing the game.  So, I took the responsibility upon myself to make sure we got it over the line this time," Simmons said following the game.

“I did not start the tournament well, but I ended well, and I am happy with my performance,” he added.

Simmons finished the tournament as the top runs getter with a total of 356.

 

 An inspired St Lucia Zouks skittled perennial finalists Guyana Amazon Warriors for the second-lowest team total in Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) history and blazed to victory in just 27 balls to complete one of the most dominant performances in T20 history. In doing so they booked their place against the Trinbago Knight Riders in Thursday’s final, the first in the St Lucia franchise’s history.

Zouks captain Daren Sammy put the Amazon Warriors in, but even he could not have seen this coming. Brandon King toe-ended to keeper Andre Fletcher and Shimron Hetmyer inexplicably left his first ball to let it crash into off-stump. Nicholas Pooran denied Scott Kuggeleijn a hat-trick, but only a single and a wide followed, and Mohammad Nabi followed up with a maiden to leave the Amazon Warriors 2 for 2 after two overs.
Pooran immediately counter-attacked, slashing Kuggeleijn over the slips then dismissively driving him down the ground for back-to-back fours, but he fell trying to loft Nabi down the ground thanks to a wonderful catch by Mark Deyal diving forward from long-off. Chandrapaul Hemraj and Ross Taylor cautiously played out the rest of the Powerplay, at which point the Amazon Warriors were 21 for 3.
Taylor, so often the rock around which recoveries are built, fell LBW essaying his favoured sweep off Roston Chase, who anticipated the stroke well and bowled accordingly. Deyal almost pulled off another amazing catch at long-off as Hemraj drove Zahir Khan aerially, but it just fell short, and a fifth straight over with only three runs off it passed, leaving the Amazon Warriors 27for 4 off eight overs.

The extent to which the tension was pressing on the Amazon Warriors was obvious. Hemraj got a friendly full toss from Chase but only pushed it for two, nearly holed out next ball, and then Keemo Paul did hole out with a swipe down the throat of Kesrick Williams at deep square leg. Hemraj finally hit the innings’ first Hero Maximum off its 56th ball, slamming Zahir over deep midwicket, but at halfway the Amazon Warriors had crawled to 42 for 5.

Chase’s first over after the chase was quiet, but the next was anything but. Amazon Warriors captain Chris Green smashed Javelle Glenn’s first ball for a Hero Maximum and seemed to have done so off his second ball but Nabi pulled off a brilliant balancing catch at the boundary’s edge.

With spin so dominant, Sammy went to Deyal who answered the call emphatically with two wickets in two balls - Hemraj inside-edged onto his stumps via his pad, and Romario Shepherd first ball pushed a simple catch back to the bowler. Again there was no hat-trick, but the Amazon Warriors innings was not long for this world.

Fletcher showed sharp glovework to stump Kevin Sinclair off Zahir, and even sharper moves in celebration and the Amazon Warriors’ ignominious innings ended next ball as Rakheem Cornwall plunged forward to take a sharp slip catch off Imran Tahir. All six Zouks bowlers had taken a wicket, and the innings had lasted just 13.4 overs.

Cornwall showed that a low target wasn’t going to temper his belligerent instincts, launching two Hero Maximums in Green’s first over, whipping Tahir for four through short fine leg and nearly breaking the stumps at the non-striker’s end with a straight drive. Deyal hit fours off each of his first two deliveries, and the Zouks were almost halfway to their target after two overs.

Naveen-ul-Haq was visibly furious with how the evening had gone for his team, bowling a bouncer that sailed even over the towering Cornwall for five wides. Cornwall continued his merry mayhem by walloping Naveen through long-on for four, and Deyal picked up a Hero Maximum for himself with a gleeful mow over midwicket. Cornwall blasted Tahir over long-on for his third Hero Maximum, Deyal closed the fourth over with his third four, and captain Green went down with his ship by bringing himself on for the fifth with just three runs to win.

 

St Lucia Zouks 56/0 (Cornwall 32*, Deyal 19*) beat Guyana Amazon Warriors 55 all out (Hemraj 25; Deyal 2/2, Zahir 2/12, Kuggeleijn 2/12, Chase 2/15, Nabi 1/6, Glenn 1/8) by 10 wickets

 

Jamaica Tallawahs skipper Rovman Powell was left to decry yet another sub-par batting performance, as the team was sent crashing from the Caribbean Premier League (CPL) by the Trinbago Knight Riders on Tuesday.

After losing the toss and being put in to bat, only Powell (33) and Nkrumah Bonner (41) managed to mount any kind of resistance as the Jamaica-based franchise was dismissed for 107.  In response, Lendl Simmons’ 54 unbeaten and 44 undefeated from Tion Webster saw the rampaging Knight Riders cruise home with a 9-wicket win.

Even in a low-scoring tournament, the Tallawhas struggled at the crease for most of the tournament.  The team scored under 120 on four occasions and over 150 on just three occasions.

“We have played a lot of inconsistent cricket.  The batters didn’t stand up all season. We ask that our international batters bat most of the overs and we just did not do that,” Powell said after the game.  On this occasion the Tallawahs found themselves four wickets down with only 24 runs on the board, coming out of the powerplay.

“The batters just didn’t come to the party. If we should look at it from a bowling perspective, I think our bowlers handled themselves very well.  The international spinners did very well for us in the middle overs and even when we started the pace bowlers were good.”

The Trinbago Knight Riders spinners blasted a hole in the Jamaica Tallawahs top order to set up a cruise to a sub-par total with a full five overs to go, and leave themselves one win away from completing the first perfect season in Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) history.

Knight Riders captain Kieron Pollard had enough faith in his opening bowlers to start with himself at short leg, and Akeal Hosein repaid that faith by bowling Jermaine Blackwood. The Tallawahs sprung a surprise sending Mujeeb Ur Rahman in at number three, who just about played out a wicket-maiden.

The Tallawahs were rocked further when Glenn Phillips cut Khary Pierre to Ali Khan. Nkrumah Bonner finally hit the game’s first boundary, easing Hosein through cover, but the Mujeeb experiment failed as he edged a reverse sweep onto his pad and was caught at slip, and the Tallawahs had slumped to 10 for 3 off three overs.

Five wides from Pierre and a straight four by Bonner more than doubled the Tallawahs tally, but while Asif Ali got off the mark with a four-over Hosein’s head, he fell next ball cutting to Pollard at point. Pollard immediately went back into short leg and kept himself there for the returning Sunil Narine who went for just three to close out a dominant Powerplay for the Knight Riders, after which the Tallawahs were reeling at 28 for 4.

Bonner continued to resist - he cut Fawad Ahmed powerfully for four, a misfield gave him another off Narine to take him to 30, and he pulled Fawad to take the Tallawahs past 50. Pierre returned with a tight over that went for just three, and at the 10 over mark, the Tallawahs were 55 for 4.

Hosein bowled out with an over of just five, and Fawad ended Bonner’s resistance with a quick googly. That finally brought Andre Russell to the crease, but Narine put an end to his innings before it got going. Russell was beaten in the flight, the ball looped to DJ Bravo at slip and the umpire adjudged it came off bat and pad. The Tallawahs had lost their biggest weapon and were 68 for 6 in the 14th.

Three more boundary-less overs came and went. Rovman Powell had now faced 32 balls for his 26 runs, Carlos Brathwaite had managed only one off his 10 balls, and something had to give off Pierre’s last over. Powell hit one Hero Maximum, the first of the innings, but picked out Pollard at deep mid-off trying to repeat the shot next ball. Even with that six, he finished under a run a ball, and the Tallawahs were 92 for 7 off 18.

Brathwaite was lucky not to be run out first ball of the 19th, bowled by DJ Bravo whose three overs didn’t contain a single boundary. Ali Khan got the unusual job of bowling only the 20th over, and while Brathwaite finished the innings with a Hero Maximum that was only the third boundary in the last 11 overs of the innings.

Lendl Simmons steered then pulled Fidel Edwards for consecutive fours to end the first over, but Narine wasn’t able to provide his usual powerful start, bowled by Mujeeb’s arm ball. Powell followed Pollard’s aggressive lead by putting himself at short leg, but Tion Webster was not intimidated, slapping Veerasammy Permaul through cover then slicing him for four to ruin a tight start to the over. After three overs, the Knight Riders were 23/1.

Webster was confident enough to cut Mujeeb’s googly for four, and with wickets, a must Powell for the first time in Hero CPL 2020 went to Sandeep Lamichhane in the Powerplay. Simmons paddled him for four first ball and then pulled Mujeeb to the fence, and the Knight Riders closed the Powerplay at 42/1. The required run rate was already under five an over.

Simmons marred a good over from Lamichhane with a slog-swept Hero Maximum, bringing up the Knight Riders’ 50. Simmons and Webster were able to work Lamichhane around as no-one had all tournament, and though Permaul’s second went for just two and his third was a maiden, at halfway the Knight Riders were comfortable at 61/1, needing just 47 more to win.

Russell was called on to bowl, but Simmons pulled him for a Hero Maximum and, when Russell bowled a second short ball which was called a no-ball, helicoptered the free hit for four. Permaul bowled out with another economical over, but Simmons again pulled Russell for six to take 10 off the 13th over. The Knight Riders were now 90/1 and needed just 18 more.

Webster guided Lamichhane through cover for four to end the Nepali’s only wicketless spell of an excellent tournament, and Simmons became the leading 50-maker in the tournament’s history, overtaking Chris Gayle with a cover drive for four off Brathwaite, and Webster finished the job that same over.

Simmons needs just three more runs in Thursday’s final to overtake Gayle as Hero CPL’s all-time leading scorer. Much more importantly though, the Knight Riders have a chance to do what last year’s Guyana Amazon Warriors could not, and in doing so win a fourth Hero CPL title. The victors in the second semi will have a mighty task to deny them.

 

Trinbago Knight Riders 111/1 (Simmons 54*, Webster 44*; Mujeeb 1/18) beat Jamaica Tallawahs 107/7 (Bonner 41, Powell 33; Hosein 3/14, Pierre 2/29, Narine 1/13, Fawad 1/29) by 9 wickets

 

A Kieron Pollard heist for the ages saw the Trinbago Knight Riders rescue a seemingly impossible win against the Barbados Tridents, showing the rest of Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) 2020 that not only can they win without Sunil Narine, but they can also do it without DJ Bravo.

Pollard smashed nine Hero Maximums in his 72 off 28 balls, and though Khary Pierre still had work to do to finish the job, it was the Knight Riders captain who made the game his own.

Johnson Charles started aggressively, cutting Akeal Hosein and whipping Pierre for four then lofting Hosein for six. But Hosein struck in his second over, Shai Hope caught at slip trying to cut a quicker ball, just before rain briefly held things up.

 

Charles took another boundary off Hosein, taking the Tridents to 37 for 1 off the Powerplay. Fawad Ahmed and Pollard kept Kyle Mayers quiet, but Charles swept well off Fawad, paddling for four and lofting for six. At halfway, Charles had 44 of the Tridents’ 59 for 1.

Pollard gave Tion Webster his first T20 over, and while Webster started well it eventually went for nine. Mayers sent a Seales full toss for six, but Charles then steered another full toss straight to point.

Pierre could have dismissed Tridents captain Jason Holder but Webster dropped a low chance at long-off. Mayers finally got hold of Fawad for a pulled four, and after 14 overs the Tridents were 92 for 2.  Hosein though recovered from Sikandar Raza dropping a simple catch off Mayers to bowl Holder as he tried to launch him over midwicket.

Mayers and Corey Anderson scrambled eight off Pollard, but Raza deceived both with drift and turn. Mayers was caught at long-off and Anderson stumped to leave the Tridents on 107 for 5 in the 17th over.

Ashley Nurse and Rashid Khan responded emphatically. Nurse swept then cut Raza for four to get off the mark, and Rashid smacked Fawad for four then pulled him for a Hero Maximum. Fawad though recovered to dismiss Rashid, Raza taking a diving catch at cover. Nurse brilliantly manoeuvred a Seales yorker over point for six, but then a pull went high rather than long and Seifer held the skier.

Pollard gave himself the 20th, and Mitchell Santner pulled him for a wonderful Hero Maximum. The captain recovered to go for just singles off the rest, but the Tridents had what looked a good score on the board.

At the start of the Knight Riders chase, Webster drilled Santner for four to get off the mark, but Holder’s extra bounce did for both him, splicing a pull to mid-on, and the dangerous Colin Munro, edging a cut to Ashley Nurse at slip. At 6 for 2, the Knight Riders were in danger of feeding after just two overs.

The Tridents went to the off-spin of Nurse to target the left-handed Darren Bravo, but the right-handed Lendl Simmons got himself on strike and hammered two contrasting Hero Maximums - the first got barely head high, the second almost cleared the stand.

Holder called on Rashid, and the Afghan answered with a wicket-maiden. Bravo survived an LBW shout playing forward but then fell in that manner playing back. The Knight Riders had stumbled to 27 for 3 off the Powerplay.

Hayden Walsh Jr started nicely, and Raymon Reifer struck with a cutter that Seifert edged to the keeper. Hosein guided a four past third man, but at 48 for 4, the Knight Riders were well behind the game at halfway.

Santner conceded just two, nearly having Hosein stumped twice. Off the returning Rashid, Simmons barely cleared deep midwicket with a sweep and Hosein was lucky his loft didn’t carry to long-on. But the luck did not last, as Hosein sliced a Walsh Jr googly far enough for Holder to take low at long-off. Thus, when Pollard strode to the middle, his team needed 87 off 39 balls.

The captain served notice of what was to come, launching Walsh into the scoreboard first ball. Holder brought back Rashid, but Pollard attacked him too, hammering a flat Hero Maximum over long-off. Simmons then ran past one to give Hope an easy stumping off Santner. Rashid gave away only four off his last over, and with four overs left the Knight Riders needed 66.

Amid sending Walsh Jr to all parts of the Queen’s Park Oval for four sixes in one game-turning over, Pollard turned down a single, and next over Raza sacrificed himself to ensure he was run out and Pollard regained strike. Reifer started the 18th well, but Pollard somehow managed two fours.

The Knight Riders still needed 31 off 12, but Pollard punished Holder for missing his yorker with two brutal Hero Maximums. Reifer got the nod for the 20th, with 15 to defend, and Pollard again started with a six. Holder appeared to have swung the game back the Tridents’ way, running out Pollard as he desperately sought a second, but Reifer’s length deserted him and Pierre kept his cool, levering a full toss over point for a score-leveling Hero Maximum.

The Tridents were done, and the winning runs came next ball with a slice past third man. The Knight Riders surely cannot afford to be without players of the class of Narine and DJ Bravo for long, but they still had someone capable of winning the un-winnable.

Trinbago Knight Riders captain Kieron Pollard has hailed the competitive spirit of top T20 bowler Dwayne Bravo, who claimed a historic 500 wickets in the format on Wednesday.

The wily medium-pacer claimed the scalp of St Lucia Zouks opener Rahkeem Cornwall to achieve the feat.  Incidentally, the wicket also happened to be his 100th in the Caribbean Premier League, also making him the first man to that mark.

Congratulations from the player poured in front far and wide, fittingly at the ground itself, his good friend and captain Kieron Pollard numbered among them.  With nine dismissals, Pollard his been the player most dismissed by Bravo.

“He has gone where no man has gone before in T20 cricket.  When T20 cricket started every thought it was going to be a joke but when you look around the world now and see each and every cricketer wanting to play T20 and the leagues.  To be at the top of the tree with 500 is a tremendous achievement,” Bravo said.

“It’s good, sometimes you have to help your friends,” Pollard joked regarding being the batsman most dismissed by Bravo.

“He’s a fierce competitor when he comes up against me, I want to go after him, he wants to get my wicket.  Nine times, I didn’t realise it was so many. But well done to him.  No matter what the situation is he keeps coming. He goes for runs but he keeps coming, that is the mettle of the guy.  I think a lot of you bowlers, especially based on the difficult times that he bowls, to take a page out of his book.”

 

Trinbago Knight Riders skipper Kieron Pollard has pointed to the team’s superb organization as playing a pivotal role in an unbeaten start to the new Caribbean Premier League (CPL) season.

On Wednesday, the Knight Riders added the St Lucia Zouks to their growing list of victims, following a 6 wicket D/L win in the top of the table clash.  On a historic day for one of the team’s top bowlers, Dwayne Bravo, the Tridents successfully chased down the Zouks’ rain-hampered 111 for 6.

With wins over the Barbados Tridents, Jamaica Tallawahs, and Guyana Amazon Warriors the Knights Riders have shown tremendous ability with both bat and ball.

“When you look at our squad, the core of the team.  A couple of guys missed out and we got a couple to come in.  But we have guys that want to perform and want that opportunity, the guys that are playing are very hungry,” Pollard said, following the game.

“Each and every person has an idea of what their role is.  There is a lot clarity that is going on in the dressing room, so when guys get their opportunity, they know exactly what they need to do,” he added.

 “Once we put those pieces of the puzzle together and everyone knows their strengths, more often than not if we play a proper game we are going to come out on top. Our strength is our teamwork and communication."

 

Cricket West Indie CEO Johnny Grave has expressed delight with the start of this season’s Caribbean Premier League (CPL) tournament, amidst complications caused by the global coronavirus pandemic.

The West Indies became one of the first teams to return to international cricket last month, after embarking on a three-match tour of England.  The entire series, which the West Indies lost 2-1, took place in a biosecure environment.

Likewise, the region has been among the first to return to hosting a major T20 franchise tournament when the CPL tipped off on Tuesday.  The entire tournament will take place in Trinidad and Tobago, where another bio-secure environment has been established.  Grave believes the return of the tournament to the region’s pitches will provide a boost to players and fans alike, despite this edition being played in an empty stadium.

“I think it’s great that we have cricket back on in the region.  We are very proud of the fact that with England and Wales Cricket Board we were able to bring international cricket back to the world,” Grave said.

“It’s great for everyone in the region, it’s brilliant for our players.  It’s great for cricket fans around the world that they’ve now got almost doubleheaders every single day for the next few weeks to enjoy,” he added.

“We haven’t had any regional cricket since the West Indies Championship finished in March.  So, I think the West Indians involved in CPL alone will pick up collectively US$2m.  It is really important to them as professional cricketers that they can earn some much-needed match fees from the tournament.”

 Former West Indies fast bowler turned noted commentator Ian Bishop believes the successful hosting of the Caribbean Premier League (CPL) in Trinidad and Tobago should serve as a signal for a more widescale return for the sport across the globe.

Following a months-long break, international cricket officially returned to the global calendar with the West Indies versus England series and is continuing with the England versus Pakistan series.  Bishop, however, pointed out that most countries could not match the tremendous resources need to put on those contests.

He believes if the CPL is able to host the tournament successfully on what must certainly amount to a shoestring budget compared to the amount spent by the England Cricket Board, then other countries should be able to as well.

"Firstly, the economic resources that England and the broadcasters put into that West Indies-England Test series and the Pakistan one that's going on now is significant," Bishop said during a press conference organised by the ICC.

"I don't think there are too many other countries that will have the resources to do it like that because you've got two grounds where hotels are actually on the ground,” he added.

"Another testing ground is where I am now. I am sitting in the Hilton in Trinidad where our CPL T20 is going to start next week.  We don't have as many resources, economically, to put into it, but our folks have been brilliant in utilising the hotel and the staff, the protective forces in carrying out this bubble so far. We still have a month to go, but at the end of that month, we will know even better how teams and countries and boards without the economic advantage can carry this out safely.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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