The St. Kitts and Nevis Patriots overcame a 216 run run chase and dominated the Super Over last night to upset the highly favored Trinbago Knight Riders on Tuesday night, and secured 2 vital points in the CPL table.
For the Patriots, it almost solidifies this franchise once again as one of the teams to look out for this season and could make a push for the playoffs and maybe this time make the CPL final. For the Knight Riders, it exposes weaknesses that were hidden within the team’s success so far for the season that they need to resolve if they want to retain the CPL title for a third straight year.
Here’s some takeaways from last night’s game.
The Patriots Are A Well-Balanced Team
The Patriots have constructed a team that are suited for any situation. They have the batsmen capable of chasing high run scores and have the bowlers to potentially end run chases as well.
Evin Lewis is having a phenomenal start to the tournament, compiling 220 runs so far, 2nd most behind TKR’s Lendl Simmons (261), and has slapped the ball past the boundary 37 times (16 fours, 21 sixes). Not too far ago he set the mark for the fastest 50 in CPL history. After starting off with a bit of inconsistency (First 4 games at bat: 36,9, 53, 12) he’s been trending upwards with scores of 26, 65 and 45 off 21 balls last night.
Laurie Evans from England has been on and off as an early order batsman in his debut CPL season, tallying 165 runs over 5 games, most of them coming off 21 fours, with a high score of 64 in a loss against the Tridents. Devon Thomas’ high score is a 71 (138 total) and Fabian is a fantastic lower order option (129 through 5 games). They have some big hitters and anyone of them could go off for a solid night against any opposing bowling team.
Sheldon Cottrell once again showing that he is one of the premier bowlers in the CPL. He’s showcased hte ‘Cottrell Salute’ six times for the tournament, including 3 in the opener against TKR. He’s he’s allowed an average of 23.7 runs for the season so far at an economy of 7.5. He’s always a danger to any batsman he faces and he’ll look to continue to get better as the tournament goes on.
Akeel Jordan only has boweld 6 overs, but with a recent performance where he took 4 wickets while allowing 33 runs, he’s bound to see more bowling action in his debut season. Alzarri Joseph has also stood out in a couple games, taking 4 wickets for the tournament so far. Fabian Allen has allowed 98 runs in 10 overs. And you still have Usama Mir, Mohammed Hafeez and Rayad Emrit as solid bowling options as well.
They’re a complete team. Once they sort out some issues in the fielding department, they could probably be one of the favorites to win it all come October.
Lendl Simmons Is In Fire Form
After a slow start to the season, Lendl Simmons has finally found form in his batting. The last 3 games for the Trinidadian have been nothing short of terrific:
He started off the season with two outings of 11 but he was getting boundaries that made those 11s. He’s settled down and is taking better quality shots. He’s been an excellent replacement for Colin Munro (who by the way went for 96 against the Tallawahs the other day). The Knight Riders will look to have a bounce back game against the Zouks where Simmons got 63 off 39 last week. If he could keep this run of form up, the Knight Riders should be looking for at least 180 runs every game.
Pollard’s Decision Making
Kieron Pollard overall was good in that game. Sure he was 19 off 17 and allowed 28 runs in two overs but was involved in 4 wickets, 3 of them catches, especially this one-hander close to the boundary to prevent a six and gave the St. Kitts bench a little jig. This was also his 50th CPL catch of his career. The first player to ever catch 50 balls in CPL.
However the decisions he made in the last few moments of the game were some of the most bizarre. On the final over, where the Patriots are 19 runs off 7 balls. You have Prassana who still has two overs to bowl and allowed 28 runs at that point. You have Pollard himself. with two overs to bowl and allowed 24 overs. How can you look at Jimmy Neesham to bowl your final over who at that point allowed 50 RUNS and his first over went for 3 fours, 3 sixes and a wide? I just didn’t understand that. And I probably never will.
Oh and by the way, James would give them 18 runs to send the game to the Super Over. Finishing the worst bowling game in CPL history: 4 overs, 68 runs, ECON 17.00. YUCK!
The nail in the coffin was his choice of batsmen for the Super Over. You’d think Lendl Simmons was the EASIEST choice to send out there to get 19 runs right?
Colin Munro would’ve been another good choice. He went off for 96 runs against the Tallawahs not too long ago. He had 28 off 24 in this game but you know he’s a boundary getter.
He puts himself on, who I wasn’t mad about because he’s as steady a batsman as ever but he was my third choice because of the situation. Darren Bravo also saw the field. Darren Bravo who’s playing in his first game of this CPL season. Has no momentum. Has no recent form. Batted 24 off 12 balls. Oh and he gets run out trying to steal a run after whiffing on a ball.
Now Lendl Simmons comes on but its too late. Out of balls and out of time. not a good look for the newly appointed captain of West Indies white ball cricket.
Carlos Brathwaithe, The Enigma
Carlos Brathwaithe was phenomenal in saving the game — and potentially the season — for the Patriots. His bowling wasn’t great during the game, but he secured 2 key wickets for the Knight Riders while coming up the crease. He got Mark Deyal out who at that point was 21 off 10 balls and could’ve ran up the score with Lendl Simmons, and only allowed Pollard to get 19 runs.
His 64 not out off 30 balls put them in a position to get them into the Super Over AND going against coach’s orders to bowl the Super Over sealed a key win for the Patriots. But looking at prior performances, you’d figure you wouldn’t get this performance from him.
Carlos Brathwaithe is an all-rounder. Not a specialist in either but a man that could perform either role when needed. Carlos Brathwaithe, at least recent form would suggest, wasn’t a good all-rounder this CPL season before Tuesday night.
- vs TKR: 2
- vs. GAW: 0
- vs. JT: 0
- vs. BT: 1
- vs. GAW: 3
- vs. STZ: 14
Bowling [Overs|Runs Allowed|4s/6s|ECON]
Above is his numbers for the 2019 CPL season prior to Tuesday night. As a middle-order batsman he’s been mediocre. As a bowler he’s been bad. Yet he pulls off these heroics when the pressure’s on him and his team to win a big game. And this isn’t the first time that this anomaly has happened!
I looked back at two recent tournaments where Carlos Brathwaithe dug his team out of difficult situations. You know the tournaments. The 2016 World T20 tournament and this year’s Cricket World Cup. I looked through his performances and nothing. No assemblance of form, he didn’t even get to bat in some of the games leading up to those moments. But sure enough, when the bell rang and Ian Bishop was on the call, he delivered:
The Super Over was a bold move for Brathwaithe as well. The coaches on the bench wanted Alzarri Joseph to bowl it.
- 4.0 Overs
- 25 Runs Allowed
- 1 Wicket
- 13 dots
- 2 Boundaries (both sixes)
- 6.25 ECON
- 4.0 Overs
- 48 Runs Allowed
- 2 Wickets
- 8 Dots
- 8 Boundaries (5 fours|3 sixes)
- ECON 12.00
And who could blame them,. Alzarri was having the better night. But Brathwaithe had the final word on the pitch and decided to bring it home for the Patriots and he did. If he gave up 19 runs he’d be shunned for it and would’ve put the Patriots in a hole standings-wise. But he didn’t.
Maybe this gets Carlos Brathwaithe going in the right direction performance-wise for the rest of CPL. Maybe it doesn’t and he’ll revert back his stinky ways. All we know for sure, is that when the team needs him most, he’ll be there to save them.