Press Release:– The spinners, led by an evergreen Mohammad Nabi, helped St.Lucia Zouks to a convincing six-wicket win over the St. Kitts and Nevis Patriots in Match 15 of the 2020 Hero Caribbean Premier League.
Daren Sammy’s side dominated the contest right from the get go, restricting the Patriots to a paltry score of 110/9; and chased down the target within 15 overs to consolidate their position towards the top of the table.
Having chosen to field first, St. Lucia Zouks got the perfect start courtesy spinner Mohammad Nabi, who dismissed both Chris Lynn and Nick Kelly without a run being added to the scoreboard.
The Afghani spinner struck again in his second over, with his loopy off-breaks enticing Denesh Ramdin and Evin Lewis to play rash shots and end up being caught in the deep, to leave him with freakish figures of 4/7 after his two overs.
With the pitch favouring turn, Daren Sammy introduced Roston Chase from the other end, as the Zouks completely dominated the powerplay overs, leaving the batting team at 22/4 after six.
Barring a solitary straight six by Ben Dunk, boundaries were very much at a premium for the St. Kitts and Nevis Patriots post the powerplay as well.
The relentless onslaught of spin claimed a fifth victim in the ninth over, as returning Zahir Khan foxed Jahmar Hamilton with a googly to find a faint edge that was smartly collected by the wicketkeeper.
Dunk tried his best to keep the Patriots scoring at a decent rate, getting two sixes against the spinners. But he too fell victim to the spin barrage, chipping one to deep mid-wicket off Rahkeem Cornwall’s bowling to leave his side at 62/6 after 14 overs.
Mohammad Nabi, who started off so brilliantly in the powerplay, came back in the death to pick the wicket of Sohail Tanvir in his final over, to pick up the first five-wicket haul of CPL 2020.
Pace was introduced for the first time into the attack post the powerplay in over 18 with Kesrick Williams bowling his first over.
The decision however was pounced upon by Patriots skipper Rayad Emrit who got a four and a six and pushed the team score towards three digits.
Emrit tried to replicate that aggression against Kuggeleign in the next over, but this time around his shot only found the fielder in the deep.
Alzarri Joseph played a useful cameo in the end, as his team got 37 runs off the final three overs to end with a score of 110/9, giving them a bleak chance of defending it in the second innings.
Cornwall gave the Zouks the perfect start to the chase, getting two sixes and two fours off Tanvir’s first over to deflate the bowling attack. The muscular opener kept the aggression going with a six that almost went out of the stadium, but soon after was knocked over by Imran Khan. The leg spinner struck again in the space of a few deliveries, as Mark Deyal walked back to the pavilion without opening his account, leaving the Zouks at 30/2 after three overs.
Roston Chase walked out to join opener Andre Fletcher in the middle, and the duo began rebuilding the innings.
The two added 22 in the next five overs for the Zouks, before Fletcher lost patience and tried to hit one over the infield on the leg side, only to be foiled by a sharp catch by Nick Kelly.
New man Najibullah Zadran seemed to be in a hurry to finish the game, getting two quick boundaries shortly after coming out to bat.
He was ably supported by Roston Chase who masterfully picked the gaps with a couple of boundaries of his own to put his side firmly in the driver’s seat as the drinks break approached.
Needing just 32 off the last ten, Zadran had to license to play his shots and did so to great effect, getting two fours and a six to further accentuate the gap between the two franchises.
The southpaw batsman however could not be there to score the winning runs, as a miscued shot found the fielder in the deep off Ben Dunk’s bowling.
Javelle Glenn came out next for the Zouks, and got a massive six straight behind the bowler’s head to leave his team needing just four runs. Chase duly finished things off for the St. Lucia Zouks, getting a boundary on the leg side to give his team an empathic six-wicket victory.
St. Lucia Zouks play their next game against champions Barbados Tridents on August 30.
St. Kitts & Nevis Patriots: 110/9, 20 overs (Ben Dunk 33, Mohammad Nabi 5/15)
St. Lucia Zouks: 111/4, 14.4 overs (Najibullah Zadran 33, Imran Khan 3/23)