Knockout cricket begins in the Caribbean Premier League on Wednesday night when the Jamaica Tallawahs take on the St Kitts and Nevis Patriots in the eliminator of the competition. There are no second chances from here on in so we should be in for a cracking contest.
The winners of this one know they will progress to face the defending champions Trinbago Knight Riders in the second qualifier on Friday night while the losers will be done for the season so everything is on the line here.
The Jamaica Tallawahs looked like they were going to finish second in the table until an absolute blitz from the Guyana Amazon Warriors saw them overtake them in the final match of the regular season. That has left the Tallawahs knowing they need to win three successive matches to win the title. Their record in the Caribbean is very good so there is no need for them to panic.
Heading into the campaign I thought Jamaica had the best balance to their side and I still think they can mix it in that regard. The crucial thing for the Tallawahs is that their top order looks in good nick. You can’t say that about everyone left in this tournament so that is a positive especially if their bowling attack continues its good form.
St Kitts and Nevis Patriots
I think it is fair to say that the Patriots are probably pleased that there were two drastically inferior sides in this competition as it meant they were able to make the playoffs without really having to do too much. They have won their last two matches though so they may feel they carry some momentum into this match with them.
At no stage in this season have we thought the St Kitts and Nevis batting line up was firing as one unit and that is very much an issue. In truth their bowling has not really convinced either. In their last three matches they have shipped 199/4, 206/6 and 168/5 which doesn’t sound much against Barbados Tridents but it was their second highest score at the time.
You would think the Jamaica Tallawahs will pack their side with spinners which could see Steven Jacobs included alongside Samuel Badree and Ish Sodhi. The rest of their side pretty much picks itself.
St Kitts and Nevis Patriots will be forced into a change with Mahmudullah having left now to join up with Bangladesh for the Asia Cup. That could open the door to Hayden Walsh coming in for this one.
I’m already on the Jamaica Tallawahs outright so I’m happy to let that ride here but I do think there is mileage in taking them to lead through six overs. They have shown an intent to get after things throughout the tournament and with their batting depth they can go hard up top. St Kitts do things differently. They take some time to play themselves into things with Gayle very sedate at the top of the order. I don’t think this wicket will suit the Patriots’ opening pair especially when they are likely to be facing three overs of Samuel Badree in the powerplay. I’ll take Jamaica to lead through the powerplay here. They were well ahead when the two met in Kingston and would’ve led at Warner Park but for the rain. The shade under evens on the Tallawahs highest first six overs looks good to me.
My other bet in the match is for Tabraiz Shamsi to be the leading bowler for the St Kitts and Nevis Patriots. We saw on Tuesday evening that this pitch is going to suit the spinners and Shamsi is the standout in that regard for the Patriots. He was the leading bowler for them against Barbados last time out and can repeat the trick here.
WON – Back Jamaica Tallawahs – Highest first 6 overs for a 4/10 stake at 1.91 with Boylesports
Back them here:
Back T.Shamsi Top St Kitts and Nevis Patriots Bowler for a 2/10 stake at 4.50 with William Hill