Having played their final home game of the tournament against the Tallawahs in CPL18, St Lucia are near-certainties to finish on the bottom of the table for a second-consecutive year which is a tad deflating. On the other side of the fence, this is a huge opportunity for St Kitts and Nevis to break into the top three despite a few minor blemishes along the way.
It hasn’t exactly been a textbook performance by the Patriots in CPL18, but they’ve still managed to find ways of winning in their fixture. They’ve been handed a golden opportunity on a platter in their upcoming match at Warner Park, they face the easiest team in the competition to defeat and could elevate themselves into that top three on the standings if all goes to plan. Reflecting on their last game against the Amazon Warriors, it was opposition leg-spinner Imran Tahir who just about spun the Patriots out of the game after claiming 4/22 which included some pretty handy names in that dominant performance. Skipper Chris Gayle and Kiwi all-rounder Anton Devcich were among the Patriots best with the bat, but they just couldn’t find that knockout blow that was needed at a time where Tahir was controlling the tempo. The St Kitts and Nevis captain is due for a big score soon, at 38-years of age Chris Gayle is still able to win a match off his own bat in just about any T20 league in the world, and the Stars could be one of his many victims tomorrow. The makeup of their batting line-up in CPL18 hasn’t quite clicked yet, the fact that Carlos Brathwaite is batting at No. 9 might have something to do with it. There’s simply just too many options when it comes to rotating batting positions, and it hasn’t quite worked to their advantage this year. Apart from his handy work in the field, Tom Cooper has been extremely underwhelming for St Kitts and Nevis with the bat and should’ve been dropped a long time ago. One good thing about having numerous all-rounders in the side is the amount of bowling options, both Ben Cutting and Carlos Brathwaite have been the best of them with Anton Devcich also chipping in with a couple overs. The loss of young Nepal spinner Sandeep Lamichhane might hurt them in the bowling department though.
The St Lucia Stars are purely playing for pride now, sound familiar? Well, you’re on the money given we were saying those exact words this time last year when they had not yet registered a win in the tournament. It’s looking like back-to-back last placed finishes for the Stars in the CPL which is not something you want to hear as a St Lucia supporter, the fact of the matter is they struggle to stay in the contest which has resulted in two wins in just about two full seasons. Rahkeem Cornwall’s drop off in form and an ever-changing batting order best describes St Lucia’s tournament, David Warner who was a huge signing ahead of CPL18 has had a patchy tournament also. Warner’s early struggles at the top of the order has seen Andre Fletcher have a total of three opening partners (Warner, Simmons and Chapman) which has left him with the bulk of the lifting to do. Fletcher has once again been a solid contributor at the top of the order (albeit not as impressive as CPL17), but it’s been St Lucia’s skipper who has stepped up big time in this year’s CPL. Not renowned for his consistency, Kieron Pollard has probably had one of his best seasons to date in the CPL despite playing in a losing side. The hard-hitting all-rounder has wielded 330 runs off his willow averaging 55 for the tournament and striking at just over 160, Fletcher is the next best for the Stars with 247 runs. Seamer Kesrick Williams past two efforts with the ball (2/23 & 3/34) have been impressive, he along with his St Lucia bowling attack just haven’t been able to produce those sorts of efforts enough this season. Obed McCoy, Qais Ahmad, Mitch McClenaghan and Kesrick Williams have all stood up at in separate stages of CPL18, but to little avail.
Top 5 fantasy picks | St Kitts and Nevis Patriots | CPL | 21st match | Warner Park
- Chris Gayle
- Carlos Brathwaite
- Evin Lewis
- Ben Cutting
- Devon Thomas
Wildcard pick – Anton Devcich
Top 5 fantasy picks | St Lucia Stars | CPL | 21st match | Warner Park
- Kieron Pollard
- Andre Fletcher
- Kesrick Williams
- Obed McCoy
- Lendl Simmons
Wildcard pick – David Warner
St Kitts and Nevis Patriots (possible) – 1. Chris Gayle © 2. Evin Lewis 3. Brandon King 4. Devon Thomas (wk) 5. Anton Devcich 6. Mahmudullah 7. Ben Cutting 8. Carlos Brathwaite 9. Jeremiah Louis/Alzarri Joseph 10. Sheldon Cottrell 11. Hayden Walsh jr.
St Lucia Stars (possible) – 1. Lendl Simmons 2. Andre Fletcher (wk) 3. Rahkeem Cornwall 4. David Warner 5. Kieron Pollard © 6. Darren Sammy 7. Qais Ahmad 8. Mark Chapman/Mohammad Sami/Kavem Hodge 9. Mitchell McClenaghan 10. Kesrick Williams 11. Obed McCoy.