BASSETERRE - St Kitts and Nevis Patriots maintained their unbeaten start to the 2021 Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) with a remarkable final ball win over Barbados Royals, who suffered their fourth defeat of the tournament at Warner Park in St Kitts and Nevis on Thursday.
The Patriots won the toss and opted to bowl, taking wickets at regular intervals as the Barbados Royals posted 160-8, with Smit Patel, making his Hero CPL debut, top scoring with 54.
The Patriots stumbled in their chase, a returning Chris Gayle top scored with 42 runs and a defeat seemed likely until Sheldon Cottrell and Dominic Drakes put on an unlikely partnership with the bat, which culminated with Cottrell striking a six off the last ball for a dramatic win in front of the home crowd.
Barbados Royals had a steady start to their innings, Johnson Charles and Patel patiently accruing runs after the early dismissal of Shai Hope. Patel would eventually reach his half century, while captain Jason Holder later made a quick cameo of 19 runs from his 7 balls. DJ Bravo, captaining the side, showed all his craft and guile in the format to take four wickets and stop the Royals from piling on the runs towards the end of their innings. There were also impressive contributions with the ball from fast bowlers Cottrell and Netherlands international Paul van Meekeren.
The Patriots were controlled as they started their innings, losing Evin Lewis in the Powerplay overs, but rebuilding with Devon Thomas and Gayle. It was another Hero CPL debutant, wrist spinner Jake Lintott, who made valuable inroads by first dismissing Gayle, and then the dangerous Sherfane Rutherford two balls later. 20 year old Nyeem Young dismissed the rest of the middle order and it seemed like the Patriots would not be able to chase the target. However the late onslaught from Drakes and Cottrell with the bat ensured the St Kitts and Nevis franchise maintained their superb start to the tournament.
The Patriots remain top of the Hero CPL league table with five wins out of five.
ROYALS 160 for eight off 20 overs (Smit Patel 54, Johnson Charles 30; Dwayne Bravo 4-26, Paul van Meekeren 2-36) vs PATRIOTS 163 for eight off 20 overs (Chris Gayle 42, Dominic Drakes 28, Devon Thomas 26; Nyeem Young 3-26, Jake Lintott 2-28, Raymon Reifer 2-34).
Result: St Kitts and Nevis Patriots won by two wickets.
Toss: St Kitts and Nevis Patriots, elected to field first
Player Of The Match: Sheldon Cottrell
Umpires: Verdayne Smith, Zahid Bassarath
TV Umpire: Gregory Brathwaite
Reserve Umpire: Carl Tuckett
Match Referee: Denavon Hayles