Here comes the last round robin game of the Caribbean Premier League 2019 as Guyana Amazon Warriors host Trinbago Knight Riders.
Even as both the teams have made it to the knockout stage, a win is crucial for both the teams on Saturday morning (India time).
Hosts Guyana had bounced back after early setbacks, losing four wickets for a mere eight runs against Jamaica Tallawahs today (Friday), thanks to a brilliant, unbeaten 73 by veteran Shoaib Malik. With nine wins from as many outings, the team will like to go into the knock out phase with an all-win record.
The Knight Riders, who had started their campaign with three consecutive wins, have since lost four of their nine games and had no result in one match. Placed fourth on the points table, the Shah Rukh Khan-owned team will be eager to enter the next round in No. 2 positon. A win tomorrow can ensure that with the bonus of playing first qualifier, where the winner gets a direct ticket to the final and the loser gets another opportunity to play the second eliminator.
Favourites for the CPL 2019 crown, Guyana Amazon Warriors enjoy the most-balanced combine in the tournament. Their four batsmen have notched up over 200 run in the season so far. Pakistani veteran Shoaib Malik did the trick in the last game when it mattered the most . On the bowling front CJ Green (14 wkts), Imran Tahir (13 wkts), R Shepherd (9), Kimo Paul (10) and Shadab Khan (8) have been among the tournament’s most lethal bowlers.
Knights have the tournament’s second best run aggregator Lendl Simmons (348) in their ranks, with Kieron Pollard (264) also contributing impressively. But C Munro with 172 being the next best proves that the batting as a unit has failed. Similarly bowling has been the weak link. James Neesham with ten wicket has been the team’s most successful bowler this season, whereas late comer Sunil Narine has so far banged five in as many games. Pollard has also made valuable contribution with the ball scalping seven wickets, same as K Pierre.
For Knights, it’s time to deliver as a team. Individual performances might not count much against the strongest CPL team this season.