Tridents battle their way to CPL final against undefeated-Warriors
Guyana Amazon Warriors
Hands down the best team in this seasons Caribbean Premier League by a country mile, Guyana Amazon Warriors are on the cusp of winning their first CPL title in the competition. Having finished runners-up on four separate occasions, Guyana is the unfortunate record holder for that particular stat. Having Followed them all season in CPL19, I can honestly say it’s hard to see them losing their first game of the tournament, especially in a game as big as this. They’ve got a tremendous amount of depth in all areas of the game, they’ve barely needed their lower order to wag with the bat and they’ve had a huge-variety of options in the bowling department. Promoted to opener this season, Brandon King has had a career-best tournament in the 2019 CPL scoring 453 runs with an average of 56+ for Guyana. Playing just the 7 games in last year’s CPL for the Patriots, King was a gamble that has payed off big time for the Warriors this season. Spinning-duo Chris Green and Imran Tahir are also one of the major reasons for Guyana’s success in 2019, the pair have taken a combined-28 wickets! After a superb CPL18, the wily-Tahir has actually outdone last year’s efforts bagging 15 wickets in just 8 games striking at 12.4. That’s not great reading if you’re the Tridents, spin has been a huge weapon for the Warriors and has rarely-failed them. Part-timer Chandrapaul Hemraj has also been a bit of a surprise-factor with the new ball, he ran through Trinbago’s top order with relative ease a while back. This is a team that’s more than worthy of winning the title, they are still undefeated and could potentially finish CPL19 with a 12-game winning streak which is a testament to Shoaib Malik and his team. This could possibly be the strongest XI ever to play in the CPL, yet they still have one more hurdle to get over…
Unlike the Warriors, it hasn’t been the easiest road to the final for Barbados, yet here we are. They’ve certainly been made to earn their shot at glory in CPL19, in the end it was a strong finish to their fixture (3-1) that saw them rise up the standings and finish outright-second. Yes it’s a final, but the Tridents have nothing to lose when you look at it from all angles. Barbados have played the Warriors three times this season with a 0-3 record, one of those losses was in the first qualifier just recently. It’s a match-up that weighs heavily in favor of the Warriors, realistically Barbados are the underdogs. The Tridents will know that there’s still a possibility of winning though, even against a team that is yet to lose a game in the tournament. There are stories out there of teams that have been so dominant right up until the most important game, only to fall agonizingly-short of glory after such a hot-streak. This is a game that leg-spinner Hayden Walsh Jr needs to make his own, he’s already shown his match-winning ability numerous times this season when handed the ball. Throw Ashley Nurse into the mix as well after his crucial four over spell of 2/14 in the second qualifier against Trinbago, proving to the skipper he’s been an underused-option in CPL19. If Jason Holder or Harry Gurney can dislodge the in-form Brandon King early, that could really make things interesting. The Tridents batsmen will have to do better against the Warriors though, almost overachieve to a certain-extent. Sure they’ve got a tail that can wag, but matching the output of King, Hemraj, Malik, Pooran and Hetmyer is just unrealistic. It has to be one of Charles, Shakib, Hope or even Hales who steps up, if not they could just be stuck in a continuous loop against Guyana this season.
Injury News: Tridents all-rounder JP Duminy retired hurt on 10 runs in the second qualifier against the Knight Riders, putting him in-doubt for the final against Guyana on Saturday.
TOP 5 FANTASY PICKS – CPL 2019 FINAL
Guyana Amazon Warriors
- Imran Tahir
- Brandon King
- Chandrapaul Hemraj
- Shoaib Malik
- Romario Shepherd
Wildcard pick – Shimron Hetmyer
- Hayden Walsh Jr
- Shai Hope
- Shakib Al Hasan
- Jason Holder
- Raymon Reifer
Wildcard pick – Jonathan Carter
PREDICTED TEAM XI’S
Guyana Amazon Warriors (possible) – 1. Brandon King 2. Chandrapaul Hemraj 3. Shimron Hetmyer 4. Shoaib Malik (c) 5. Nicholas Pooran (wk) 6. Sherfane Rutherford 7. Chris Green 8. Romario Shepherd 9. Keemo Paul 10. Odean Smith/Ben Laughlin 11. Imran Tahir.
Barbados Tridents (possible) – 1. Johnson Charles 2. Alex Hales 3. Shakib Al Hasan 4. Shai Hope (wk) 5. Justin Greaves 6. Jonathan Carter 7. Jason Holder (c) 8. Raymon Reifer 9. Ashley Nurse 10. Hayden Walsh Jr 11. Harry Gurney.
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.