TRINBAGO Knight Riders skipper Kieron Pollard believes the Guyanese in the crowd who booed him vociferously yesterday are worried about facing TKR in a knockout game. Pollard’s entrance to the wicket was greeted with loud jeers by the majority of Guyanese, keen to see TKR out the tournament to possibly pave an easier route to the title.
At the National Stadium, Providence, Pollard had other ideas and blasted 26 from nine balls, including three sixes and a four, to secure a six-wicket victory against St Kitts and Nevis Patriots, with eight balls to spare.
After the match, Pollard said the jeers only served to fuel him at the crease.
“In life, if you’re not good, no one speaks about you. As a team, the way they reacted to us you can see they wanted to see the back of us. As I said previously, the guys in the dressing room, the mettle that we have, yes, we didn’t win the last two weeks-and-half but I knew it was going to be there and I thank them for spurring me on.”
He also admonished the boo-boys for showing a lack of regional patriotism.
“It’s amazing to know that I’m right from Trinidad and Tobago and you walk into the cricket ground, as much as you’re supporting a team, and booing a West Indies player as well; so that goes to show the kind of characters we have going around the Caribbean.”
As much as he criticised some members of the pro-Guyanese fans, Pollard admitted to taking a page out of the Guyanese play book, by utilising four spinners against the Patriots.
On Friday, Guyana Amazon Warriors bowled 11 straight overs of spin to strangle TKR’s batting.
“We learned something. Spin would have been the option. And winning the toss where the wickets looked a bit tacky, our spinners bowled magnificently well. Going to Trinidad might be different but we’re gonna come up with the best combination to win. That’s all we’ve been trying to do. We’ve been trying things. It’s better to try and fail than fail to try. We got a lot of licks for it but we continue to take it because our backs are broad and we crack on.”
On the victory against Patriots, Pollard lauded his bowlers for setting up the match nicely for them.
“We limit them to 125 - very good. The bowlers and the fielding effort, we asked for that all-hands-on-deck approach, that sort of intensity and desperation. I can’t fault the guys at the halfway stage, 125, you turn up at any ground and limit the opposition (to that), you’ll take that ten out of ten. At the halfway we thought we were right into it but it got a little too close for comfort.”
Pollard lauded the consistency of the then CPL top scorer, Lendl Simmons, who stroked his fifth half-century of the tournament - 51 off 47 balls - to anchor the TKR chase.
Simmons, who went undrafted and was called as a temporary replacement for Colin Munro, now has 429 runs from 11 matches at an average of 42.90.
“Simmons, his consistency, he has been great for us at the top of the order. I’m hoping this can be the turnaround. We have a couple days (rest), we go back in front of our home crowd and that will spur us on even more. There is always room for improvement.
A couple blemishes in the field, that is something we need to speak about. Every run and every boundary saved is crucial for us, so that is something we will have a conversation about.”