Successful Trinbago Knight Riders (TKR) captain Dwayne Bravo has left and will now line up for the Barbados Tridents at the 2019 Hero Caribbean Premier League T20 tournament.
Bravo sent out a message on social media yesterday saying that he will not be involved with the double defending champions TKR for the upcoming CPL. At the CPL draft in London today the Tridents will announce Bravo as their US$160,000 the first pick.
The news came as a shock to local cricket fans who shared their frustration on social media. Guardian Media understands that the new Tridents owners have also acquired the services of Afghanistan coach Phil Simmons, who said he will not be seeking a renewal of his contract after the Cricket World Cup which ends on July 14 in England.
The Trinidadian Simmons was the coach of the St. Kitts/Nevis Patriots last year at the CPL.
Two weeks ago Guardian Media broke the story that Keiron Pollard was coming back home to play for the TKR. It is highly likely that Pollard who ironically captained the Tridents in the early years of the CPL will be made the captain of the TKR. Pollard played for the St. Lucia Stars in last year's CPL.
With Bravo moving on, the TKR can retain a minimum of three (3) or a maximum of four (4) of the following West Indian players: Sunil Narine, Darren Bravo, Denesh Ramdin, Khary Pierre, Javon Searles, Nikita Miller, Kevon Cooper, Anderson Phillip
Shannon Gabriel, Terrance Hinds and Aamir Jangoo.
Meanwhile, the Tridents is now owned by the USA-based CMG Companies (CMG) leads a team of local and international investors in the acquisition of the cricket franchise in Barbados.
CMG, through its affiliates, primarily owns and operates franchise restaurants, hotels, and real estate across America and is one of the largest owners of a major fast-food franchise.
CMG is also no stranger to sports, with sponsorship deals with NBA teams including the Dallas Mavericks, several similar initiatives at the collegiate and grassroots level, investment in MASL’s Dallas Sidekicks, along with past ownership the Jamaica Tallawahs.
The move comes as the Trident’s former owner Vijay Mallya continues to battle against extradition from the United Kingdom to India, where he is alleged to have committed bank fraud, with authorities trying to recover millions in unpaid loans.
CMG’s takeover also comes as good news for Tridents’ players, who had not been fully compensated for 2018.
The principal of CMG Manish Patel said the decision to invest in the Tridents was a good business opportunity.
“Selling our ownership rights of the winning Jamaica Tallawahs held from 2014-2016 was the right move for us as a business, but we missed being involved in the region and in CPL.
“When the chance to purchase the Tridents came along we were delighted, especially with the opportunity to bring good strong local partners onboard. We can’t wait to get started at enhancing the profile of this team on and off the field and to bringing a comprehensive sports entertainment package to Barbados. We will work very hard to make Barbadians proud of their team,” Patel said.
Also, the team named West Indies Test and One Day International captain Jason Holder as its marquee player. The 27-year-old Holder captained the Tridents last year.
In last year’s CPL, the Tridents finished bottom of the table, having won two and lost eight of their 10 games played.
It was the Tridents’ worst showing in the six-year history of the CPL.
The holder is the top-ranked all-rounder in the world in the ICC’s Test rankings and is the sixth-ranked all-rounder in ODI cricket.