11:55 PM IST
The Report by Alagappan Muthu
St Lucia Zouks 92 (Zadran 22, Walsh 3-19) beat Barbados Tridents 89 for 7 (Charles 39, Glen 2-11, Williams 2-12) by three runs
Barbados Tridents needed 93 in 120 balls with 10 wickets in hand. A little later, they needed 30 off 41 with six wickets in hand. At the end, they came away with the most bizarre loss in the CPL.
At the centre of it all was Javelle Glen. A man who hadn’t bowled a single delivery in his senior career. Here, he dismissed Tridents’ top scorer Johnson Charles to create some tension and then kicked it into high gear when he knocked over Rashid Khan in the 19th over.
St Lucia Zouks, from having barely ever looked like winning this game, suddenly had nine runs to play with in the last over. Imagine that. No, wait. Don’t. Imagine this. Only twice in T20’s entire history has a team played out 20 overs and failed to chase a target as small as 93.
The overnight superstar
Javelle Glen. He is 22 years old. He’s played eight T20s. He’s called in by his captain because this pitch was slow and low and spin-friendly and he bowls some half-decent legbreaks. This wasn’t so much a master plan as Daren Sammy making the most of a crappy situation. But sometimes that’s all a captain has to do. Have faith.
Glen repaid it several fold as he stepped up to the crease and teased the Tridents’ top-scorer, Charles, with a beautifully flighted ball outside off stump to have him caught at long-off. Sammy was the first man to go up to his young game-changer and hug him.
And if that was a sweet moment, check this out: The Zouks captain looked past Kesrick Williams – who picked up 2 for 12 on the day – and Scott Kuggeleijn – who is a specialist death bowler – and went straight to his magic legspinner for the 19th over of what had now become a high-pressure chase.
Glen barely batted an eyelid though. It was like he knew he belonged on that stage, like he relished being his captain’s go-to man.
Tridents were in full panic mode now, desperate to try and find a boundary – something that hadn’t happened since the ninth over of the chase. Rashid tried to hoick a short ball over long-on, but couldn’t clear the fielder.
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Confident with the ball. Confused with the bat. That doesn’t sound like a defending champion, does it?
Until virtually the last two overs of the game, Tridents looked like the only team capable of winning this game. They had already done excellent work and introduced West Indies to a young spin talent themselves – Joshua Bishop, who may not have any mystery about his left-arm spin, but in his ability to read batsmen and adjust his line, length and pace, he may have something better.
They also had Hayden Walsh Jr. Twenty four hours ago, he unravelled the moment one of his good deliveries was thumped out of the ground by Kieron Pollard. Here, he was unfazed. Not even by a missed stumping that could have given him a wicket in his first over. Why? Because he knew he could do better. And he did, producing a most charming googly, one that rose above Roston Chase’s eyeline, and just as the batsman was all set to slog it away, the ball dipped under his swing and shattered his stumps. It was poetry.
If Tridents’ batsmen had half the belief their bowlers have in themselves, this would have been a cake walk. Instead, Shai Hope kept scratching around. Corey Anderson couldn’t lay bat to ball. Charles fell at the wrong time. Nurse didn’t know how to see the chase through. There were 62 dot balls in the innings, and only six boundaries. It just wasn’t good enough.
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