Fierce battle predicted for Tridents– Patriots clash

Hero Caribbean Premier League 2016…

With much to play for given the competitive start of this year’s tournament, a fierce battle is predicted for the Basseterre Stadium tonight as match eight of the Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) gets underway. The match will feature hosts St Kitts and Nevis Patriots against former champions Barbados Tridents.

With one loss to their name from their only game against the Trinbago Knight Riders (TKR) on Friday, the Tridents are yet to get out of the losing block and will be looking to do so tonight against the Patriots. Led by power-hitting all-rounder Kieron Pollard, the Tridents have been one of the top teams of the CPL and are known to be good starters. They will aim to put a tick in the box tonight to defy the odds of losing a second straight game.

Expectations will be high for the guys in blue and yellow, especially with the likes of Pollard, AB de Villiers, Shoaib Malik and David Wiese in the side. Whether batting or bowling first, Pollard must lead his team into a zone where they can control the match early on. The Tridents will be hoping for a good start from pugnacious opener Steven Taylor and the talented Kyle Hope, so that the middle and late order which consist of Malik, de Villiers, Pollard, Wiese and Nicolas Pooran could provide the flourish in the middle and the end.

Their bowling line-up has a mixture of youth and experience, providing the ideal balance that can wreck any batting line-up on a good day. In Ravi Rampaul they have an experienced bowler who is knowledgeable in this field and has handled pressure situations often while delivering for whichever team he plays for. There is also variety in the South African duo of Wayne Parnell and Wiese, and Pollard. Not forgetting the young but effective Akeal Hosein, who had an excellent first game against TKR. Ashley Nurse and Malik can also add to the Tridents’ bowling department.

In its element, the Tridents are by every means a tough team, but the Patriots are a side that can be destructive and at times very hard to beat. Although not rated as one of the premier teams, the Patriots’ performance on Sunday against the St Lucia Zouks hints at how good they can be. Their openers Lendl Simmons and Evin Lewis provided the perfect start and the other batsmen lifted the tempo to see them record the highest total (203-7) of the tournament. Discarded West Indies wicket-keeper batsman Devon Thomas seems the player to look for in this tournament, with already three delightful cameos. Carlos Braithwaite, Faf du Plesis, NLTC Perera, Brad Hodge and Jonathan Carter could all be instrumental on their day.

Samuel Badree, who has not been his usual positive self, is the spearhead of the attack, but must improve to aid his team’s bowling department. Tabraiz Shamsi, the left-hand chinaman bowler, is the standout bowler for the Patriots thus far and if he, along with Krishmar Santokie, Perera and others, get it right, then they can make it easy for their mostly aggressive batting.

The Patriots have won one out of three games, but with that spectacular performance in their last game, they would have certainly gained some confidence. The match is set to start at 19:00h.

St Kitts Nevis Patriots: Faf du Plesis (Captain); Lendl Simmons; Samuel Badree; Brad Hodge; Thisara Perera; Jonathan Carter; Krishmar Santokie; Evin Lewis; Tabraiz Shamsi; Kieran Powell; JJ Smuts; Devon Thomas; Shamarh Brooks; Tino Best; Jeremiah Louis; Nikhil Dutta; Alzarri Joseph and Carlos Braithwaite.

Barbados Tridents: Kieron Pollard (Captain); AB De Villiers; Shoaib Malik; Ravi Rampaul; Nicholas Pooran; David Wiese; Robin Petersen; Raymon Reifer; Ashley Nurse; Shamar Springer; Wayne Parnell; Akeal Hosein; Imran Khan; Kyle Hope; Navin Stewart; Kyle Corbin; Steven Taylor and Jason Holder.