After a disappointing show in CPL, St Lucia will hope to regain some pride when they face St Kitts and Nevis Patriots in the 21st fixture of CPL 2018 at the Warner Park in Basseterre, St Kitts on Thursday, August 30. Both teams have played six matches against each other in the Caribbean Premier League with the Nevis Patriots winning four of those and the Lucia Stars two.
In their most recent clash on August 21 at the Darren Sammy National Cricket Stadium in Gros Islet St Lucia, Patriots had inflicted a crushing seven-wicket victory over Lucia. After dismissing the Stars for just 69 in the 13th over, the Patriots raced to their target with more than 12 overs to spare.
St Kitts and Nevis Patriots
Patriots have won three and lost as many matches out of the six they have played so far in CPL 2018 and are currently placed fourth on the points table with six points. After winning back-to-back matches against St Lucia Stars and Barbados Tridents respectively, the Patriots faced a four-wicket defeat to Guyana Amazon Warriors in their previous fixture.
Batting: St Kitts batting relies heavily on the Universe boss Chris Gayle, who has been their only regular runscorer this year so far with respective scores of 86, 35, 24, 0 and 40 in his five outings and will once again be key in upcoming fixture against Lucia. While Devon Thomas had top-scored with an unbeaten 38 in the reverse encounter against the Stars and will be expected to fire in this game as well.
Bowling: Patriots lost their key bowler Sandeep Lamichhane due to his national duties. In his absence, the onus will be on Sheldon Cottrell, Ben Cutting and Carlos Brathwaite to deliver the goods with the ball. Cutting and Cottrell have both taken eight wickets each in six matches and these two will pose the biggest threat to the Stars
Expected Playing XI: Chris Gayle (C), Evin Lewis, Brandon King, Sheldon Cottrell, Devon Thomas, Tom Cooper, Hayden Walsh, Anton Devcich, Mahmudullah, Ben Cutting and Carlos Brathwaite.
St Lucia Stars
On the flipside, This has been yet another disappointing CPL season for the St Lucia Stars who have struggled right through the tournament to get themselves off the bottom of the points table with just four points. Things are not looking too bright for them having lost six out of eight matches and even a win in both their remaining fixtures will not guarantee them a place in the playoffs.
Batting: Skipper Kieron Pollard is currently leading the CPL 2018 runs charts with 330 runs which includes one century and a half-century. While Lendl Simmons had a good outing in the previous match against Jamaica Tallawahs, scoring 45 runs off 26 balls. Both these players will be key against the Kitts. Except for one-off outings, both David Warner and Mark Chapman failed to make any impact throughout the season, which was one of the reasons behind Stars decline and the team will expect them of fire in their final two clashes.
Bowling: Mitchell McClenaghan has been the team's most successful bowler with eight wickets in as many matches while Kesrick Williams is coming off a three-wicket haul against the Tallawahs. Both these along with Qais Ahmad forms a formidable bowling attack and the team expects them to fox some early scalps.
Expected Playing XI: Kieron Pollard (C), Lendl Simmons, Daren Sammy, Qais Ahmad, Mitchell McClenaghan, Kesrick Williams, Obed McCoy, Mark Chapman, Andre Fletcher, Rahkeem Cornwall and David Warner.