Captain Kieron Pollard ensured St Lucia Stars’ playoff hopes aren’t snuffed out as the Stars bounced back from Tuesday night’s abysmal effort of 69 all out to trip up CPL table-toppers Guyana Amazon Warriors by six wickets with 11 balls to spare.
Chasing 141, Stars were two runs ahead on the Duckworth-Lewis-Stern par score when rain stopped play at 71 for 2 after 11 overs. The Stars batting went through a mild stutter when play resumed as David Warner and Qais Ahmad fell in quick succession to the legspin duo of Imran Tahir and Devendra Bishoo respectively.
After Stars slumped to 97 for 4, it looked as if the match was headed for a deja vu finish of the first showdown between these sides in Guyana. Stars, in that instance, had lost by three runs while chasing 142. On Friday, though, with 31 to win off the final three overs, Pollard smashed 30 runs – three sixes and as many fours – off Bishoo in the 18th over to quell any doubts over a repeat ending.
Hit and miss
Stars’ fielding, which has been a major source of woe throughout another dismal campaign, was a mixed bag on Friday night. Two balls into the match, Kesrick Williams dropped Chadwick Walton at point to put Luke Ronchi on strike, who hammered three fours off the last three balls of the opening over. Walton also survived a clear run-out chance on 7 in the third over as Stars looked like they were in for a long night in the field.
Walton only scored five more before he backed away to make room for Cornwall’s offspin from round the wicket but he missed and lost his leg stump. Warner counterbalanced the early drop with two very sharp catches in the Powerplay to get Ronchi and Shimron Hetmyer. Just as quickly, though, another chance was left on the table when Lendl Simmons misfired with Cameron Delport well short of his ground in the sixth over, having just come to the crease after the fall of Hetmyer. Delport was also shelled by Pollard in the 14th over but finally fell for a top-score of 25 in the next.
The shoe was on the other foot in the 16th over though as a terrible mix-up between Sherfane Rutherford and Sohail Tanvir resulted in a simple relay by Qais to the bowler Obed McCoy that made Rutherford wave his bat in frustration as he walked off for 15. Stars got sharper in the waning overs as Warner took his third catch in the 20th, followed by a last-ball run-out, as Amazon Warriors ended on 140 for 9.
Here’s the VIDEO:
— CPL T20 (@CPL) August 25, 2018