CPL 2023: Knight Riders beat Kings to ensure top-two finish
Trinbago Knight Riders ensured a top-two finish and place in the 2023 Republic Bank Caribbean Premier League (CPL) Qualifier with a seven-wicket victory over the St. Lucia Kings.
The home team won the toss and chose to field first, but it was their former player Colin Munro who was the star of the Kings innings, scoring an unbeaten 72 runs to take the side to 167-3 after 20 overs.
The Knight Riders chase was headlined by a superb half -century from Mark Deyal, alongside support from wicket-keeper Lorcan Tucker and Andre Russell, to take the side to victory in their final game this season in front of their home crowd.
Kings lost powerful opener Johnson Charles in the Powerplay, as fast bowler Jayden Seales celebrated with a wicket on his birthday, but the Kings would rebuild as Munro and Roston Chase patiently scored runs in their 76-run partnership, which came off 58 balls.
Chase was dismissed off a Waqar Salamkheil delivery and that was followed shortly afterwards with the big wicket of captain Sikandar Raza, who fell to Sunil Narine. A late cameo from Sean Williams, who smashed 34 runs off 17 balls would see the Kings score 58 runs in the last five overs to finish on 167-3.
Trinbago Knight Riders had an early scare as opener Martin Guptill was given out LBW from just the third ball of the innings, but the decision was overturned on review.
Guptill eventually lost his wicket in the fourth over, and when Nicholas Pooran, leading runscorer for the franchise this season, lost his wicket in the final ball of the powerplay to an Alzarri Joseph delivery, the Knight Riders looked in trouble at 45-2.
However, opener Deyal would compose a brilliant half-century, reaching 57 before being caught on the boundary by Peter Hatzoglou. Lorcan Tucker would provide invaluable support with 38 runs, before a flurry of boundaries from Andre Russell would ensure the Trinbago Knight Riders would win.
CPL action now moves on to the final leg in Guyana, with the Guyana Amazon Warriors taking on the Jamaica Tallawahs on Wednesday evening at Providence. (CPL)