Playing his first match at the stadium which was recently renamed in his honour, Darren Sammy marked the occasion with a scintillating knock which propelled his side to a comprehensive victory over the St. Kitts and Nevis Patriots as the Hero Caribbean Premier League
(CPL) continued with match 21 on Thursday at the Darren Sammy Stadium in St. Lucia.
Sammy smashed 59 from 35 deliveries in his special which included five powerfully struck sixes and two well timed fours to help his team to a competitive total of 174-9. He walked to the crease with his team in a bit of worries at the fall of Michael Hussey’s wicket with the score at 83-4. At that stage the Zouks were on par for the average first innings total on that ground for the last previous 10 innings which is 147. However, the skipper change that with an aggressive innings which inspired the eventual total and served as the difference between the two teams. It is his highest score for the tournament and first over 30 after a miserable start to the tournament with bat.
The right handed batsman received valuable support from Johnson Charles who made a blistering 25 from 14 balls and Michael Hussey 26. The Zouks innings fell about some 10 runs short as teenage prodigy Alzarri Joseph bowled a fiery final over where he claimed three wickets to finish with 4-41 from 4 overs. Krishmar Santokie and Jonathan Carter chipped in with two wickets apiece as they tried to restrict their opponents.
In response, the Patriots fell for a self-destruct 139-9 in their 20 overs with only JJ Smut 30 and Faf du Plesis 48 putting up a fight in their attempt to reach the target. Playing in his first match this season, left arm pace bowler, Delorn Johnson, was the main force in the Zouks attack collecting 3-37 in his quota of four overs. He was supported by Jerome Taylor who claimed two wickets. The Patriots fell short by 35 runs.
The win keeps the Zouks chances of meeting the playoffs alive as they now have two wins from five matches. They will now prepare to face the Tridents on Saturday at the said venue.
While the Patriots face elimination after the first round where they have so far just one victory from eight matches and will not qualify for the play-offs even if they win both of their matches against the Trinbago Knight Riders in Florida.