Carlos Brathwaite brought back fond memories of his 2016 ICC World T20 final heroics with an appearance fraught with Hero Maximum sixes which served to propel the St Kitts & Nevis Patriots to a impressive 42-run victory over defending Hero Caribbean Premier League champions Trinbago Knight Riders at the Queen’s Park Oval. Brathwaite, who hit England’s Ben Stokes for four successive sixes to thrust West Indies to victory in Kolkata two years ago, hit three consecutive sixes off Dwayne Bravo (and five total) during an explosive showing last night. His 41 in just 15 balls was fundamental to lifting the Patriots beyond 200. He also removed the surging Colin Munro as the Knight Riders ended their first home leg of the 2018 Hero CPL, falling to a disappointing 1-3 . Munro had made half-centuries in each of the Knight Riders’ first two games and looked on course for another until being caught by Evin Lewis after 35.
Heavy rain in Trinidad during the day had left the outfield drenched, making play difficult for bowlers and fielders throughout the evening, with repeated substitute balls required due to them either being sent over the stands or becoming too slick for bowlers to handle. Ali Khan, one of the breakout stars from the first week of action, made another stunning start with two wickets in the first four balls of the Patriots’ innings taking down Evin Lewis and Tom Cooper. Chris Gayle was cautious as he and Devon Thomas set about rebuilding from the early losses, but was then dismissed for 35 just as he started to build a rhythm. Thomas (the eventual man of the match), meanwhile, was batting beautifully and reached an elegant 28-ball half-century (his first in T20 cricket) with successive fours off Dwayne Bravo and ended with 58 off 34. Wickets continued to fall at regular intervals, though, with Anton Devcich, Thomas himself and Mahmudullah all being sent off. All’s well that ends well however, as that brought Ben Cutting and Brathwaite together for a fiery conclusion to the innings.
Within the first 5 overs the Knight Riders had already lost Sunil Narine (via Sheldon Cottrell), Chris Lynn (bowled by Sandeep Lamichhane), and Brendon McCullum (scalped by Ben Cutting) for just 10 runs between them. Denesh Ramdin then fell to Patriots’ hometown hero Jeremiah Louis (who collected two wickets himself) to leave the Bravo brothers to try and rescue something for the home side. Darren Bravo (41), batting at No. 5, and Kevon Cooper (42 not out), lower down the order, put up a good fight but the pair had too much ground to cover to threaten the Patriots en route to victory.
The Patriots next fixture is scheduled against the Jamaica Tallawahs at Sabina Park on August 15th at 6PM.