St Lucia Zouks pace bowler, Kesrick Williams, has rubbished the idea of players claiming to underperform at this season's CPL tournament because of pitches, as he insists there has been plenty of time to adjust.

The competition has so far been plagued by a number of low scoring total’s, and batsmen seemingly unable to come to grips what has so far proven to be a surface that favours bowlers.  There has so far been very little issue for Williams and the Zouks, though, as they have racked up five wins and currently occupying the third spot.

“I don’t have a problem with the pitches, to be honest.  These wickets, I love these wickets, for me, they show how skillful you are as a bowler.  If you are just running in and bowling fast and trying to hit the deck, then you are going to go for runs,” Williams told the Mason and Guest radio program.

“If you look at the guys that are getting wickets, they have skill.  T20 is a batter’s game, everyone wants to see balls hit wickets.  At the end of the day, these wickets are not suitable for T20 cricket but we are professionals and we have to learn to adjust.  If we can’t adjust as professionals it makes no sense to play cricket because you will have times like this,” he added.

Williams and the Zouks have certainly adjusted.  The team’s five wins and three losses have put them in a place-off spot for the first time in the franchise’s history.

 

The six Afghan players currently playing in the 2020 CPL will be able to stay until the tournament is concluded, thanks to the intervention of the Afghanistan Cricket Board (ACB) and Cricket West Indies (CWI).

The Barbados Tridents’ stuttering defence of their Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) title finally ended as they again failed to make three figures against a well-balanced Guyana Amazon Warriors attack.

Former West Indies batting coach Toby Radford believes ‘quarantine fatigue’ could explain the poor performance of some players currently taking part in the Caribbean Premier League (CPL).

So far this year’s edition of the tournament, which has been staged in the unusual circumstances of the coronavirus pandemic, has in many instances produced low scores and poor batting performances. 

There have been many factors blame for some of the poor showing, the absence of a crowd, poorly prepared pitches, and players that are still rusty, are some of a few that have been advanced.  However, another is the length of time some players have been away from family and friends in back-to-back quarantine-required competition.

For players like West Indies captain Jason Holder, Rahkeem Cornwall, Jermaine Blackwood, Shai Hope, and other members of the regional team that toured England, the CPL follows several weeks of quarantine during the international series.  With even more restrictive conditions in the CPL, Radcliffe believes the isolation could be taking its toll.

“I’m not making excuses for them but some of those guys have been in a bubble in the UK for two or three months earlier in the summer.  I think some were back in Barbados for about 5 days before heading back to Trinidad for another bubble,” Radcliffe told the Mason and Guest radio program.

“They’ve barely been home in the last 3 and a half months, that’s no excuse, but it does have an effect.  It is attritional, even if you are away from home for those times normally on tour you can go to a restaurant, you can eat out, meet up with your family and get away from cricket…it does have a mental effect.”

Guyana Amazon Warriors star batsman Shimron Hetmyer feels confident last year’s beaten finalists are beginning to gain momentum, following an indifferent start to the competition.

Hetmyer blasted an enterprising 56 from 35 balls in a low-scoring encounter as the Warriors eased past the St Lucia Zouks book their place in the competition’s semi-finals.  The win was the fifth but third in a row for the Guyana based franchise.

The team won two of its first three matches but then struggled to keep momentum after losing the next three games in a row.  Hetmyer, however, believes the team’s latest win shows full confidence is growing within the squad following its latest win.

“The guys are starting to work much harder than before and starting to believe in ourselves a little more each and every day.  From here on out its just us taking it one game at a time,” Hetmyer said.

Personally, his individual performance would also have been pleasing for Hetmyer who failed to get into double digits in the last three games with scores of 9 and 1.

“It’s coming back I thought I lost it a few years ago, but I’m working on it and trying to stay a little bit more focused on my game and how to start, build and finish and innings.”

St Kitts and Nevis Patriots captain Rayad Emrit was left at a loss for words after a poor showing against the Trinbago Knight Riders to a 59 runs loss and 7th defeat of the campaign.

A short-handed Knight Riders, who were at the opposite end of the spectrum, winning their eighth game in a row, were led by a blistering 96 off just 63 ball from opener Lendl Simmons.  The onslaught underpinned the team's sizable total of 174 for 4, which, based on current form, the Patriots were hardly ever likely to threaten.  In the end, with only three batsmen making double figures, the team was restricted to 115 for 7.

I’m at a loss for words at the moment.  I think we’ve seen why TKR is so dominant throughout the tournament and why we are where we are at the moment,” Emrit said following the match.

“We just couldn’t get anything right.  They totally outplayed us in all departments.  I think that’s the outcome of the game.  It shows why they are on top,” he added.

In eight games so far the team has managed just one win and remains rooted to the foot of the table.

Shimron Hetmyer followed another good Guyana Amazon Warriors bowling performance with an unbeaten half-century to take the perennial finalists to the Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) knockout stages. Bar an early burst from Rakheem Cornwall, the St Lucia Zouks never got going with the bat as the Amazon Warriors mixed seam and spin to good effect, and Hetmyer made the total and the ground look far too small.

Cornwall smashed sixes off both Chris Green and Kevin Sinclair, but Andre Fletcher fell early, leading-edging Sinclair to short third man. Naveen-ul-Haq started with a wicket-maiden, Leniko Boucher pulling straight to captain Green at mid-on. Imran Tahir also started with a maiden, leaving the Zouks 15 for 2 after four overs.

Cornwall hit two fours off Naveen, driving him over his head then pulling him, but when the opener mistimed a Romario Shepherd cutter Naveen pulled off an excellent catch diving forward. Cornwall had hit 20 in four shots, but the Zouks only scored off six other deliveries to end the Powerplay at 27 for 3.

Green raced through an over for just two, and Tahir was unlucky not to get a wicket in an over that yielded only four. Najibullah Zadran attempted to reverse sweep Green to little effect, and Sinclair was unlucky a Najibullah top-edge fell safely. Najibullah at last middled one, pulling Sinclair hard for a Hero Maximum, and at halfway the Zouks were 47 for 3.

Najibullah and Kavem Hodge managed to hustle eight off Green’s last over, but Hodge soon got stuck which put pressure on Najibullah, who tried to attack Tahir but under-edged a googly to keeper Nicholas Pooran.

Keemo Paul bookended his first over with wickets, starting with Hodge under-edging through to Pooran and ending with Zouks captain Daren Sammy falling LBW for another low score. At 59 for 6 off 13, the Zouks were in need of a rescue mission.

Mohammad Nabi and Javelle Glen survived Tahir’s last over, Paul’s second over like his first went for just two, and while Nabi clubbed Shepherd for four through cover that was the first boundary in 34 balls. Entering the last four overs, the Zouks were 72 for 6.

Nabi steered Naveen past point for four, but Naveen foxed him with a pair of slower balls to put the onus on Nabi to attack. Nabi mistimed his drive and holed out to Sinclair at deep cover. Glenn got his first boundaries, both edged past short third man off Paul, as the Zouks finally managed a double-figure over to reach 89 for 7 off 18.

Naveen dropped short and was pulled for four to go for 11 off the last over of an otherwise excellent spell, and Glenn smoked a cover drive in the last over. But Paul recovered well to ensure that was the only boundary off the 20th, and the Zouks total felt some way under par.

Scott Kuggeleijn sprayed wides both sides of the wicket in a nine-ball first over that somehow only went for five. The Amazon Warriors’ intention to attack the Powerplay was clear, as Chandrapaul Hemraj started Nabi’s first over by smashing a Hero Maximum and King closed it by square driving for four.

Brandon King was bowled attempting a ramp over fine leg, but the aggression continued with Hetmyer slashing for four. Hemraj ruined a potential Nabi maiden with a Hero Maximum over long-off, and Hetmyer dismissed a Kuggeleijn long-hop through point for four. Cornwall closed the Powerplay tidily, but after six overs the Warriors were comfortable at 38 for 1.

Hemraj clipped Kesrick Williams fine for four to take the required run rate below five an over. Hetmyer seized on Cornwall’s first poor ball, hammering a Hero Maximum over midwicket, and the Amazon Warriors ticked along to 55 for 1 off eight overs but soon after Hemraj was bowled by Nabi off both pads.

Hetmyer attacked Chemar Holder mercilessly, pulling his first two balls for Hero Maximums and following up with three fours in a row - a majestic cover drive on the up, a rasping square cut and a punch over mid-off - to rocket the Warriors to 82 for 2 and himself to 46 after 10 overs. A 24 run over had reduced an already simple chase to a stroll.

Nabi finished his spell tidily, but while Sammy showed faith in Holder, Pooran continued where Hetmyer had left off with a glorious check-driven four. Hetmyer followed suit to bring up a third fifty of Hero CPL 2020 off just 33 balls, and after 12 overs the Amazon Warriors were 94 for 2 and needed just 16 to win.

Pooran walloped Glen through midwicket for four but fell next ball reverse-slapping to cover where Boucher took a good low catch. The winning moment was a bye, but the job had been done by the bowlers and Hetymer, and with three straight wins the Amazon Warriors look to be gathering steam.

The Zouks had already qualified for the semis, but the top order will need to step up if they are to win Hero CPL for the first time. Such was the margin of victory that the Amazon Warriors jumped into second place, and who knows how important that could be come the semi-finals.

 

Trinbago Knight Riders' opening batsman Lendl Simmons has credited some tough love from uncle Phil Simmons with a breakout performance against St Kitts and Nevis Patriots, in the CPL on Wednesday.

Simmons slammed a whirlwind 96 from just 63 balls, registering 7 fours and a towering 6 sixes.  His performance anchored a 174 innings for the Tridents, who then restricted St Kitts to 115 to score an eighth straight win.

Prior to the fireworks, Simmons had eked out an average season to date, registering scores of 32 and 25 against the Barbados Tridents and Jamaica Tallawahs respectively but with ducks against the Tallawahs and St Lucia Zouks.  According to Simmons, however, being able to bide his time with the team winning and encouragement from his uncle provided the motivation.

“I’ve been struggling for the last couple of games that I played.  I didn’t get the start to the tournament that we wanted but seeing that we were winning it game me confidence that I would come good at some point in time,” Simmons said.

“Last night I had a talk with Phil(Simmons) and he told me what I needed to hear and that reminded me of my ability and talent and what I can do.”

The Trinbago Knight Riders showed they are a formidable squad, not just a starting XI, as Kieron Pollard rested both himself and Sunil Narine from an experimental lineup that was still far too good for St Kitts & Nevis Patriots. Lendl Simmons found form, Sikandar Raza and Pravin Tambe were excellent with the ball, and the Patriots are all but out of Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) semi-final contention.

A catastrophic top-order display saw the Barbados Tridents capitulate to 92 all out in the face of an impressive bowling and fielding performance from the Guyana Amazon Warriors, who eased home with 20 balls to spare to pick up their fourth win of the season and go clear in third place on the Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) 2020 table.

The Tridents shuffled their batting order, Justin Greaves coming into the XI to open, but he lasted only one ball as he fell LBW trying to sweep Amazon Warriors captain Chris Green. Johnson Charles fell to a magnificent catch by Shimron Hetmyer who sprinted 25 yards and dived full length, sending the bowler Kevin Sinclair into another athletic celebration.

Jason Holder had only himself to blame for being run out by T20 debutant Kissoondath Magram, meaning the openers and captain had all fallen for 0. Shai Hope was shifted down to five but fell for another low score, chipping a catch back to Sinclair.

The Tridents, who had won the toss and chosen to bat, were 9 for 4 in the fourth over, and added just five more runs before the end of the Powerplay - the second lowest-scoring in Hero CPL history. Green bowled out with another maiden, Sinclair’s last over went for just three, and the Tridents were 17 for 4 after eight overs.

More poor calling saw the fifth wicket fall, as Jonathan Carter set off, was sent back by Kyle Mayers and was caught short of his ground by yards. Mayers followed Carter back to the dugout two balls later top-edging a pull, keeper Nicholas Pooran taking a brilliant catch running towards the boundary, and at halfway the Tridents were a staggering 22 for 6.

Tahir’s second over was survived, but in the next over Naveen and the Amazon Warriors picked up two more. First Ashley Nurse pulled straight to Romario Shepherd at deep square leg, then Raymon Reifer looped the ball up to Pooran off his glove while playing forward, leaving the Tridents 27 for 8 after 12.

Mitchell Santner finally hit the Tridents’ first boundaries, swinging Tahir for a Hero Maximum then straight driving for four. Santner then lofted Magram for a Hero Maximum to take the Tridents past the lowest score in Hero CPL history - 53 all out back in 2013 by the Trinidad franchise. Rashid Khan slapped two sixes off Keemo Paul, but Rashid fell trying to slice Naveen over the off-side, Sinclair taking a good catch at deep cover.

Naveen finished with venue-record T20 figures, and the Tridents were 79 for 9 off 18. Hayden Walsh Jr slapped a four off Paul, and while Santner was run out off the last ball, they and Rashid had at least ensured the Tridents had batted the whole innings and got a recognisable T20 total - the same total they failed to chase against the St Lucia Zouks at Queen’s Park Oval on Sunday.

Holder had two slips in place for his first over, a maiden to Brandon King.  Santner got some drift, almost swing, with his arm-ball, but dropped short enough for King to crash a cut for four. Holder finally conceded his first run off his 11th ball via a Sinclair edge and Santner’s second went for just one.

Holder attacked with Rashid in the Powerplay, and while the Afghan fired five wides, he beat Sinclair all ends up and knocked back his off-stump.  Hetmyer was lucky to inside-edge for four past the stumps first ball, and to see a pull-off Holder fall just short of Santner at mid-on, but King lofted the last ball of Holder’s over over long leg for a Hero Maximum to take the Amazon Warriors to 31 for 1 off the Powerplay.

Hetmyer fell to Walsh to continue his run of low scores, beaten through the gate, and with Pooran in early off the back of his brilliant century against the Patriots, Holder attacked with his wrist-spinners in tandem. King was lucky to survive a wild swipe off Walsh, but the wrist-spin attack was just about seen off and King cashed in by cutting Nurse for four. At halfway, the Amazon Warriors were 52 for 2.

First ball after the break, King hammered a flat Hero Maximum off Holder and the over went for 10. Nurse was nudged around, but King had started to find his feet and whipped Rashid hard for four to take the Amazon Warriors to 72 for 2 off 13. King took his score to 40 and his strike rate over 100 with an inventive flick off the stumps over short fine leg for four, and Santner was milked for six to take the required runs under double figures.

Walsh dropped a tough diving catch to deny Rashid a second wicket, but King was able to bring up his first 50 of the season with the score-levelling stroke. Pooran nudged the run that confirmed a win that hadn’t looked in doubt for the majority of the 36.4 overs bowled tonight and ensured that Hero CPL 2020 lightning would not strike twice.

Trinbago Knight Riders batsman Colin Munro insisted it was a massive relief to shake off the shackles so to speak, after posting a cracking half-century in a Caribbean Premier League (CPL) showdown against Jamaica Tallawahs, on Tuesday.

Munro’s blistering 65 from 54 balls provided the anchor in a 19-runs win for the dominant Knight Riders, who put 184 on the board before restricting the Tallawahs to 165.  The win was the team’s seventh in a row. 

The shot-making top-order batsman had gotten off to a solid start to the campaign, previously hitting 49 against the Tallawahs and 50 against the Tridents.  The player, however, hit a rough patch after failing to score against both the Tridents and Warriors in the last two games.

“It was a big relief.  I hadn’t gone duck, duck in the CPL before and even though I’m experienced you start doubting yourself a little bit,” Munro said after the game.

“I had some really good chats with some senior players and the coach and I don’t have to prove anything to anybody here.  The boys back me, they believe in me 100 percent.  I had a little bit of luck and got tired towards the end, which didn’t help.”

Jamaica Tallawahs captain Rovman Powell has suggested the team will stick with struggling batsman Chadwick Walton, despite a wretched run in the competition so far.

In seven games to date, Walton has managed a paltry 14 runs at the top of the order.  A closer look at the batsman's individual scores on the Tallawah’s scorecards card makes for even more horrific reading.  On three occasions Walton has been dismissed without scoring, in three other matches he made 1 twice and 2 once.  His highest total of 10 runs came against the Barbados Tridents.

With the team struggling to hold on to the crucial fourth-place spot, after 3 wins and 4 losses, pressure has continually built on the opener, who suffered a similar fate even when coming further down the batting line-up.

“To be honest when we look at our squad, we still have to back Chadwick.  We just have to hope that he comes good at some point,” Powell said following the team’s latest loss to the Knight Riders.

“We are heading into the business end of the competition and hopefully he has the mental strength to pull through.”

Walton also struggled to make an impact for the team last season who had their worst season after finishing in last position.

 

 The Trinbago Knight Riders marked the return of Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) 2020 to the Brian Lara Cricket Academy with a seventh straight win. 

Kieron Pollard and Colin Munro smashed 71 off the last five overs of the Trinbago Knight Riders’ innings, and the spinners bowled superbly against a Jamaica Tallawahs top-order that once again left Andre Russell with far too much to do.

Sunil Narine returned with a bang, hitting two fours off Fidel Edwards and top-edging for six to take 17 off the first over, then he plundered Carlos Brathwaite for three fours in a row. Brathwaite recovered to take Narine’s wicket, but the all-rounder’s 29 off 11 had sent the Knight Riders flying out of the blocks.

Colin Munro should have fallen for just 4, but Jermaine Blackwood dropped a simple catch. While Lendl Simmons smashed Edwards for a Hero Maximum over square leg, Mujeeb was miserly as ever and it was largely thanks to Narine that the Knight Riders managed 49 for 1 off the Powerplay.

Munro found the fence twice off Tallawahs captain Rovman Powell, and while Sandeep Lamichhane proved unhittable, Powell’s second over released the pressure, going for 14 including multiple extras. Lamichhane showed his class, dismissing Simmons with a leg-break that drew a top-edged hack to point. Munro inside-edged past the keeper to take the Knight Riders to 83 for 2 at halfway.

Munro edged for four again off Powell, but was bamboozled by Lamichhane and was lucky to survive. Brathwaite bowled a tidy over, and while Seifert managed to reverse sweep Lamichhane for four, that was the only boundary the Nepali conceded all day. After 14 overs, the Knight Riders were 105 for 2.

Seifert smote Edwards over his head for six then next ball slashed to Lamichhane at third man. But Munro got two reverse-sweeps away for four in a row off Mujeeb, and Powell was too predictable as Munro was able to adjust and swing a Hero Maximum then a four over midwicket to take himself to 50. An over studded with extras went for 18.

Pollard levered a near-yorker for six then pulled for four off Mujeeb, and Edwards twice paid for missing his yorker, Pollard dispatching a full toss for a Hero Maximum and Munro smoking a half-volley for four. Brathwaite got the daunting task of bowling the 20th, and Pollard heaped the pressure on with a Hero Maximum. Munro pulled for four, and while Brathwaite closed the innings with a caught-and-bowled, the damage was done.

Chadwick Walton’s difficult Hero CPL 2020 continued as he slashed the first ball of the innings to point, giving Akeal Hosein a dream start. While Blackwood started brightly, Pierre bowled him as he attempted to sweep, reducing the Tallawahs to 14 for 2 in the second over.

The Knight Riders were on top, so much so Pollard put himself at short leg for Narine, who went for just two. Hosein returned and went for just six, and off the Powerplay the Tallawahs had stuttered to 35 for 2 with the in-form Glenn Phillips facing just nine balls.

The nine runs that came off Narine’s second was largely due to poor fielding, but Phillips’s Hero Maximum off Fawad Ahmed was a fine hit. Phillips also cut DJ Bravo for four as two overs in a row went for double figures, but Pierre returned with a tight over, and at halfway the Tallawahs were 70 for 2 and needed 11.50 an over.

 

Phillips hit another six off Fawad, but Nkrumah Bonner had slowed almost to a crawl before falling LBW in the same over. Powell made little impact before being bowled by a Fawad googly, and so when Andre Russell came to the crease the Tallawahs were 84 for4 in the 13th and needed over 13 an over.

DJ Bravo chose an off-side heavy field to restrict Russell. But it was the well-set Phillips who fell, slicing high in the air to give Seifert a simple catch. When Narine produced a good caught-and-bowled to dismiss Asif Ali, Russell found himself with Brathwaite for recognised company and a required run rate above 15.

Brathwaite clipped for four when Bravo strayed onto his pads, but was lucky not to find a fielder when he sliced a drive high in the air. Brathwaite guided a four and Russell clubbed a six off Narine’s last over, but the Tallawahs still needed 68 off the last 18 balls.

Brathwaite and Russell targeted Jayden Seales, and though one of Russell’s fours should have been caught by Simmons at cover, a 22 run over just about kept the Tallawahs in the game. But while Russell took DJ Bravo for four through the off-side and was dropped by Seales at backward point, he couldn’t manage another boundary and with 38 needed off the last over, the jig was up.

Pollard brought himself on to close out the game, and all a frustrated Russell was able to do was to limit the net run-rate damage with a few

Sticking to the game plan from the team coaches helped Joshua Da Silva gets his season-best score of the 2020 CPL season on Sunday in a losing effort against the Guyana Amazon Warriors at Queens Park Oval.

The 22-year-old Trinidadian playing for St Kitts and Nevis Patriots scored 59 runs from 46 balls smashed five fours and two sixes as he played a pivotal role for the Patriots as they compiled 150 for 5 from their 20-over allotment.

The Amazon Warriors, spurred by an unbeaten 45-ball 100 from Nicholas Pooran achieved the target with 15 balls to spare.

Nonetheless, the half-century was Da Silva’s best score in four innings this season eclipsing the run-a-ball 41 he scored against the Barbados Tridents on August 18.

He told Sportsmax.TV that sticking to the game plan as outlined by coaches Mark O’Donnell and Stuart Williams, helped him achieve success against the Amazon Warriors bowling attack.

“It felt really good to get that score. I just wanted to play my role,” said Da Silva, who explained the plan communicated to him before he walked to the middle following the dismissal of Kieron Powell, bowled by Chris Green for just two and with only seven runs on the board.

“That was the main thing Coach Mark told me before. He told me don’t go outside of your role. Stuart Williams also, he’s been a big help to me. He told me your role is not to bash the ball all over the place,” Da Silva said.

“You’re going to get yourself in, you’re going to use the gaps, use your hands, that’s your strength. You’re going to get boundaries; you’re going to get sixes but play to your strengths. That is what is going to help us. That is your role. You need to be there in the end.”

He did not quite make it to the end.

Romario Shepherd bowled him with the second ball of the 18th over to make it 119 for 4. However, Denesh Ramdin’s 30-ball 37 pushed the total to 150.

However, even though he enjoyed the knock and hoped to maintain that form for the remainder of the season, da Silva revealed that it was uncomfortable out in the middle.

During his innings, he squatted on his haunches between overs, sweat visibly dripping from his helmet.

“It was really hot, really humid. We saw Glen Phillips (of the Jamaica Tallawahs in a previous match) he was on his knees after his innings even during the innings he was on his knees; Pooran as well,” he said.

“The conditions weren’t easy, running around a lot. The conditions were not ideal.”

 

 

Nicholas Pooran smashed the first hundred of Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) 2020, the third fastest in the tournament’s history at just 45 balls, and the first of his T20 career, to rescue the Guyana Amazon Warriors from another shaky start with the bat and make a mockery of what looked like a competitive St Kitts & Nevis Patriots total. ‘Smashed’ belies the class and timing with which Pooran struck the ball to all parts of the Queen’s Park Oval.

Amazon Warriors’ captain Chris Green won the toss and chose to field, and bowled Kieran Powell sixth ball of the match. Kevin Sinclair got the second over on his senior T20 debut and went for just a single. While Evin Lewis took Green for 10 off two balls, he chopped on to become Sinclair’s first career T20 wicket.

Ben Dunk started with an edged four off Green, and Joshua da Silva was busy at the crease. But three singles were all the two could manage as Sinclair bowled a third in a row, and after the Powerplay, the Patriots were 33/2.
Imran Tahir nearly had Da Silva stumped, but a swept four by Dunk saw the over go for 8. Sinclair bowled out in one go, and with 17 dots and no boundaries, it was a fine first T20 spell. Tahir’s second went for just three, and Dunk lost patience against Green and was bowled to leave the Patriots 51/3 at the drinks break.

Ashmead Nedd came on, and off the 25th ball, he had faced Da Silva finally found the boundary. Da Silva found the fence off Nedd again, and when Keemo Paul came on to break a run of 13 straight overs of spin the Patriots were 69/3.

Da Silva attacked Paul, hitting his first-two career T20 sixes, the first a loft over the bowler’s head and the second a pull into the stands. He continued to hit powerfully down the ground, although Nedd dropped a sharp caught-and-bowled chance, and Ramdin joined in with a Hero Maximum over midwicket.

Da Silva drove Tahir, who for once went wicketless, over cover, and off Naveen’s first ball brought up his first T20 half-century off 42 balls. He used Naveen’s pace to close the 17th over with back to back fours, and with three overs left the Patriots had moved to 118/3. Romario Shepherd though broke the stand, bowling the impressive Da Silva with an excellent yorker.

Ramdin improvised to hit Paul for six, but Sohail Tanvir was caught napping and Paul ran him out. Shepherd started and ended the 20th with good yorkers, but in between Nedd didn’t even get a hand on a swirling Ramdin top edge and the Patriots keeper smashed a Hero Maximum to get the Patriots to their highest score of Hero CPL 2020.

Brandon King edged an Alzarri Joseph yorker past the stumps for four but was fully in control of a cover drive in the same over. King’s latest opening partner, Sinclair, was scratchy; he was dropped off by Tanvir off his own bowling and was lucky to survive a maiden from Imran Khan, That put pressure on King who skied a Joseph bouncer to give Ramdin a simple catch.

Sinclair’s dismissal followed soon after, chipping softly back to the bowler Jon-Russ Jaggesar, who followed up with the wicket of Shimron Hetmyer who top-edged a cut to Ramdin. After the Powerplay, the Amazon Warriors were 26/3 and in need of a partnership between Pooran and Taylor. They got one, and how.

Pooran hit two Hero Maximums over Jaggesar’s head and Taylor pulled a third hard and flat off Emrit, but at halfway the Amazon Warriors still needed over nine an over. Pooran sensed the urgency, hammering Imran for four then six over the off-side and closing with an enormous six over midwicket to take 18 off the 11th.

Pooran didn’t relent, dismissing Jaggesar over long-off and slicing Joseph behind square to bring up 50 off just 25 balls. Another four made it 12 off the over, and the Amazon Warriors had surged to 99/3 off 13 and the rate had fallen to under seven-and-a-half.

Ish Sodhi did well to only go for six off his first over, including two byes, and Emrit also went boundary-less. But Pooran made the equation far easier with a slog-sweep clean over the fence, his sixth Hero Maximum, as Sodhi’s second over went for 11.

Emrit called for Tanvir, but Pooran launched him over his head for a Hero Maximum to bring up the first hundred partnership by any team in Hero CPL 2020 and followed up with a fierce pull for four to leave the Amazon Warriors needing 16 off the last 18 balls.

Fittingly, Pooran sealed the victory with 15 balls to spare and reached his century by hammering three sixes in a row off Sodhi. The Patriots’ batting showed promise, but it looks a struggle now for them to make the semi-finals.

 (Guyana Amazon Warriors 153/3 (Pooran 100*, Taylor 25*, King 14; Jaggesar 2/33, Joseph 1/24) beat St Kitts & Nevis Patriots 150/5 (da Silva 59, Ramdin 37*, Dunk 19; Green 2/31, Sinclair 1/9, Shepherd 1/13) by 7 wickets)

Upcoming Fixture: Tuesday 1 September - Match 21: Jamaica Tallawahs v Trinbago Knight Riders (10am), Brian Lara Cricket Academy

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