CHRIS GAYLE, captain of the St Kitts and Nevis Patriots, has dedicated their win over Jamaica Tallawahs to their fans as they ended their Caribbean Premier League losing streak at home on Sunday.
The Patriots were on a poor run of form at Warner Park, before defeating Tallawahs by seven wickets on the Duckworth-Lewis-Stern method. The fans at Warner Park had little to cheer for so far, losing by four wickets to Guyana Amazon Warriors on August 28, a no-result against St Lucia Stars on Thursday and a 46-run loss to Trinbago Knight Riders on Saturday.
The fans at Warner Park showed commitment to the cause on Sunday, staying at the venue during two rain delays to see their team pull off the victory. Rain throughout the day forced the match to bowl off at 7 pm instead of 6pm. Tallawahs batted first and posted a daunting 206 for six in 20 overs.
The contest was interestingly poised with Patriots on 65/1 after 6.3 overs when the rain caused a further 40-minute delay. The wait for the fans at Warner Park was worth it, as they saw the Patriots gleefully chase a revised target of 118 in 11 overs and book a place in the playoffs. Gayle fell shortly after the 40-minute delay for 41 to pacer Krishmar Santokie, before Ben Cutting fell for duck to leg-spinner Adam Zampa. In stepped Bangladeshi Mahmudullah, and along with player of the match Rassie van der Dussen put on an unbroken 47 runs for the fourth wicket. The pair took the Patriots to 118/3 in 10.1 overs with van der Dussen ending on 45 not out off 24 balls with four fours and two sixes. Mahmudullah scored 28 not out. After the match, Gayle expressed delight that their fans finally got to see them win as Barbados Tridents lost all five of their home fixtures to miss the playoffs. Gayle said, “It is good to get two points. We needed this badly – not only the team, the fans also needed this as well – because based on what was happening in Barbados, we did not want that to actually happen to us.”
Despite the win, Gayle said his team has to step up their game before the playoffs begin. “(We) still (have) a lot of room to improve our game of cricket in all departments. We did not bowl that well and we did not field that well, luckily we came across the line with the bat. We needed an ugly win and we got this one and I am happy with it.”
Earlier, Tallawahs scored a massive 206/6 with Rovman Powell leading the way with 84. Powell, who faced 40 balls and cracked 11 fours and four sixes, was ably supported by David Miller who scored 32. The pair put on 79 for the fourth wicket. Opener Glen Phillips also batted well, hitting 40. Cutting was the top bowler for Patriots, taking 2/29 in four overs. The Patriots have one more match before the playoffs begin against the Tridents at Warner Park today.