CPL: Amazon Warriors batter Tridents to top leaderboad

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(Reporting and Photography by Akeem Greene in Barbados)

A sea of Guyanese supporters, waving flags and taunting the opposition, descended upon Kensington Oval on Friday night to witness Guyana Amazon Warriors comprehensively defeat Barbados Tridents by eight wickets and go top of the table in the 2018 Hero Caribbean Premier League.

It prolonged the home side’s desperate quest for a win at home, and also means Tridents chances of making the playoffs are pretty slim.

Chasing 166 for victory, the misfiring opening pair of Chadwick Walton and Man-of-the-Match Luke Ronchi shattered Tridents’ supporters hopes by racing to 70-0 by the end of the Powerplay, with Ronchi taking Jason Holder for 24 runs in the sixth over to end the night with a pugnacious, unbeaten 67 (5x4s; 3x6s) from 40 balls.

Luke Ronchi led the charge with a blazing innings

The exasperated flow of runs continued even after Chadwick Walton fell for a 34-ball 43. At the half-way stage, Warriors were well placed at 100-1.

Shimron Hetmyer came and wasted little time, smashing Ashely Nurse over mid-wicket for consecutive sixes, as it continued to be smooth sailing for the Warriors.  Ronchi reached his first significant landmark of this season from 26 balls.

Hetmyer was brilliantly caught by Steve Smith on the boundary for 30, but by then Warriors had victory on their doorsteps. Cameron Delport smashed two boundaries and the mission was accomplished with 20 balls remaining.

Early setback for Tridents

With their backs against the wall, Tridents still produced the same old routine of losing clusters of wickets in the Powerplay. All the big guns- Martin Guptill, Hashim Amla and Dwayne Smith- were back in the hut with just 43 on the board.

Roshon Primus was even on a hat-trick in the sixth over – Smith fell to the trap, hitting it straight to deep backward square, and Amla lobbed one to cover.

Trident’s most successful pair this season, Steve Smith and Shai Hope, were in the middle and looked threatening, intent on being positive despite the early wickets. They added 50 in 40 balls when Hope was needlessly run-out for 32, chancing a second.

Warriors’ support was second to none on Friday

Nicholas Pooran came and wasted no time in shifting gears, belting a 27-ball 46, inclusive of four fours and two sixes, which was backbone of the 71-run partnership in 40 balls with Steve Smith. They moved the total from 89-3 to 160-5.

Primus came for spell in the death and was taken apart by Pooran. Delivering two wides at the start of the over, Primus was then hit for a six and a four as the over yielded 16 runs.

Smith was the first of the two to fall for 40 as Warriors found their lengths and lines and dragged the scoring back led by the ever-economical Imran Tahir.

Within the space of seven balls, Tridents lost three wickets and only scored five runs. It was a slide which came back to haunt them in the overall result of the match.

Tridents will play St Lucia Stars on Sunday from 14:00h in their final home match, while Warriors travel to Trinidad to play Trinbago Knight Riders on September 5 at Queen’s Park Oval from 20:00h.

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