St Lucia Zouks v Trinbago Knight Riders
Sunday 22 September, 01:00
Live on Sky Sports Cricket
The Zouks produced the sort of insipid and chaotic performance for which they are well known early on Saturday for their first home game of the campaign. They bowled and then batted with the skill, nerve and discipline befitting of a team which is badly run and badly selected.
Their bowlers went round the park, conceding 172. Kesrick Williams took three wickets but at 11 an over he was horribly expensive. Darren Sammy and Obed McCoy, their two most economical bowlers at six and 6.3 an over respectively, didn't bowl their full allocation.
The game was up by the third over when they found themselves 15 for three. Eventually they folded for a pathetic 101 to be hammered out of sight. Colin Ingram, a new recruit to replace Thisara Perera, must be wondering what he's walked into. To add insult to injury, McCoy is now a doubt for this one because of injury.
Visitors need to work on bowling
Trinbago have had some time off to reflect on their first defeat of the season, a Super Over loss to the St Kitts and Nevis Patriots. In that downtime they will dismiss it as one of those things or, if they're smart, recognise that their bowling unit is not performing well.
They failed to defend 216 against the Patriots. Against Jamaica Tallawahs, albeit a victory, they conceded 226 and even the Zouks' batting got hold of them, posting 167.
It is possible that after the loss of Dwayne Bravo to a season-ending finger injury, they should have been more ruthless. Instead of picking up Lendl Simmons for the rest of the season, they could have said ‘actually, we need a bowler'. Simmons has at least been in the runs but they are blessed with an embarrassment of riches up front with the bat.
They cannot say the same with the ball. They lack an overseas x-factor performer and could regret, in the inevitable showdown with Guyana Amazaon Warriors, not saving a bit of the budget back.
Trinbago could go big
This is the second match to be played at the Darren Sammy Stadium this term. The first-innings scores in the 11 (1-2 denote match won by team batting first or second, most recent first) read: 172-1/173-2/152-2/196-1/196-1/132-2/204-2/140-2/69-2/226-1/212-2.
With seven scores of more than 170 and five of them more than 190, the wicket is good. So long as Zouks don't get first dibs. They could be shot out for anything.
Chaser could be done for
The match odds market is low in liquidity, hardly surprising because of the mismatch that is likely to unfold. We would expect Trinbago to be no better than [1.50] for this one.
Those are not the sort of odds we play at. Nor do we feel it's right to start pontificating about ways the Zouks can get a foothold. They couldn't manage that on their front porch.
Time to get with Warriors
Colin Munro is our go-to man for top Trinbago runscorer now the secret is out with Kieron Pollard. Pollard was 7s for his first outing of the season and he duly copped. Munro has one win from two.
With a hit rate of 42% last season he's decent value at 11/4. The rise of Simmons is a bit of blow for this market because Munro is having to bat at No 3. Trinbago have kept faith with Sunil Narine as opener. Pollard is 9/2.
Andre Fletcher had the same win rate as Munro last term for the Zouks. But he has been a major disappointment this term and we're cautious about getting involved at 3s. Ingram is 7/2.