Zouks, Tridents battle it out for a top four spot
A heartbreaking-loss to the St Kitts & Nevis Patriots has left the Tridents finals hopes up in the air, there’s no guarantee they’ll qualify, however they aren’t out of the race just yet. One thing in favor of the Tridents is that they still have two games remaining in the tournament before the CPL19 finals gets underway, one of them being against the Zouks who currently sit just one spot above them by a single-point. A win against the Patriots would’ve given them the upper-hand against St Lucia, unfortunately it just didn’t happen. For Barbados, they just simply have to set and forget. Hayden Walsh Jr, Jason Holder and Harry Gurney are excellent bowling form along with the addition of overseas all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan who’s a proven performer. The one area of the game where Barbados continues to slip up and almost stagnate lies in the batting order. Alex Hales continues to deliver underwhelming-performances, his spot in the XI is by no means guaranteed anymore. The Tridents batting has been strengthened though with the arrival of Shakib Al Hasan who scored 38 at No. 3 in his first CPL19 outing. JP Duminy also scored the fastest fifty in CPL history just recently, he’s another that Barbados can rely on to consistently-deliver. It’s just filling in the gaps which has been the issue, they need more out of Jonathan Carter, Jason Holder and especially Alex Hales with the bat. All-rounder Raymon Reifer is proving to be an absolute-jet at the back end of the innings with the bat, an 18-ball blitz almost got them over the line against the Zouks. If Barbados lose this game, they can kiss finals goodbye.
St Lucia Zouks
This is going to be one of the more intriguing contests in this season’s CPL, two teams who’ve both had their ups and downs face-off in what should be a finals-decider. A spirited-victory against the depleted-Tallawahs who gave it their all saw the Zouks keep their finals aspirations well & truly alive as they jumped back inside the top four. Jamaica is the only team who can’t make the CPL19 finals now, so it’s been a very evenly-spread competition this season. Zouks seamer Kesrick Williams continued his purple patch-like run bagging another three wickets against the Tallawahs. Williams has taken 9 wickets in his last three games and looks to be leading from the front, and it looks as if he’s found a bowling partner in the form of Krishmar Santokie who picked up 2/31 in his first CPL19 appearance. Perhaps the most significant talking point to take out of their last game was the run chase and how they approached it. A 25-ball half century from Rahkeem Cornwall entertained the crowd, but more importantly got St Lucia off to a lightning-fast start. Promoting Hardus Viljoen up the order proved an effective move, the South African scoring 32 in quick succession before departing. Skipper Darren Sammy planted the last two sixes over the rope to help guide the Zouks home, it was only fitting that Sammy was out in the middle when the winning runs were hit. It was interesting that St Lucia elected to play another bowler in place of wicketkeeper-batsman Jahmar Hamilton, could this become a trend?
TOP 5 FANTASY PICKS – CPL MATCH 26
- Shakib Al Hasan
- JP Duminy
- Hayden Walsh Jr.
- Jason Holder
- Harry Gurney
Wildcard pick – Raymon Reifer
St Lucia Zouks
- Kesrick Williams
- Andre Fletcher
- Fawad Ahmed
- Rahkeem Cornwall
- Colin de Grandhomme
Wildcard pick – Darren Sammy
PREDICTED TEAM XI’S
Barbados Tridents (possible) – 1. Johnson Charles (wk) 2. Alex Hales/Justin Greaves 3. Shakib Al Hasan 4. JP Duminy 5. Jonathan Carter 6. Jason Holder (c) 7. Ashley Nurse 8. Raymon Reifer 9. Hayden Walsh Jr 10. Chemar Holder/Josh Lalor 11. Harry Gurney.
St Lucia Zouks (possible) – 1. Andre Fletcher (wk) 2. Rahkeem Cornwall 3. Colin Ingram 4. Colin de Grandhomme 5. Chris Barnwell 6. Hardus Viljoen 7. Darren Sammy (c) 8. Krishmar Santokie 9. Jeavor Royal/Kavem Hodge 10. Kesrick Williams 11. Fawad Ahmed.
Zak Varik is an Australian columnist/writer who specializes in the sports category cricket. With over four years of experience covering all sorts of cricket tournaments around the world, Zak has gained extensive knowledge in International cricket as well as domestic.
“I’ve loved watching cricket since I was about 7 years old, my childhood hero was none other than Andrew “Roy” Symonds who probably enhanced my love of the game through the years”.
Zak is now an established writer for FCN (Fantasy Cricket News) and has also previously represented other Blogs during his time as a writer.