The CPL 2022 season returns from another day off on Saturday and it does so with a double header of action which begins with arguably the two biggest teams in the competition meeting when the Jamaica Tallawahs meet the Trinbago Knight Riders
The Tallawahs have made a very acceptable beginning to their campaign and will be looking to back that up here. Things have been a little more hit and miss for the Knight Riders so they will be eager to pick up a second win here.
The Jamaica Tallawahs won their opening two matches in relatively comfortable fashion but they were unable to come out on top in their third one which has just left them lagging behind the leaders Barbados Royals but still in a perfectly acceptable position in second place and with the potential to push on here. Generally six wins are needed for a place in the next stage of this tournament so two wins from the opening three has Jamaica on track.
The Jamaica batting has been pretty decent so far in the tournament which is very much a positive for the Tallawahs because on paper at least that looked to be the weakest area of their game heading into the competition. Their top order didn’t deliver in the latest match but they showed they have a middle order who can rescue things. They couldn’t quite get over the line with the ball against St Lucia but have bowled fairly well in the tournament in the main.
Trinbago Knight Riders
There was an air of invincibility about the Trinbago Knight Riders heading into the campaign. They looked to have one of the strongest squads that has ever been assembled for a franchise tournament but they haven’t been able to convert that into wins on the field. They have a win, a defeat and a washout from their three matches to date and will probably be looking for that convincing display which they have lacked so far.
I think the thing we are all expecting is for their batting to come to the party. The big hitters come one after the other in this team and they are some of the biggest ball strikers in the world so if a couple of them come off then the Knight Riders will always be in the ascendancy. The good thing is that Trinbago have a couple of very good spinners who can always halt any opposition charge so that they are not relying on their batting.
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This feels like it could be a battle between the Jamaican all-rounders and the Jamaica Tallawahs will be hoping that Rovman Powell stands up and fights fire with fire. He is leading the side and a big score would not go amiss.
Andre Russell has spent his CPL existence with the Jamaica Tallawahs prior to this season and he’ll face his former teammates for the first time here. He’ll be out to put on a show for his new side even if it does come against the nation of his birth.
Andre Russell certainly hasn’t hit the ground running in the competition yet this season but it can only be a matter of time before he does because he was in pretty decent nick in The Hundred recently. I suspect it is just adjusting to the different conditions and then he’ll be on it but he has had a couple of efforts with the bat and the ball to find himself and I fancy we are about to see the best of him on a ground which should really suit him.
Dre Russ has a performance line of 37.5 in this match and that looks a little on the low side to me. I’m sure he will want to put on a show against his former teammates and I expect him to do just that. We’ve seen the ball come onto the bat a lot better here in St Lucia which will help the batting mite of Russell but the quicker conditions should serve him well with the ball too. Throw in that he fields where it matters and the Jamaican can cover this line against his former teammates.
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