Trinbago Knight Riders captain Kieron Pollard is undoubtedly one the greatest players ever in the Twenty20 format. Since lighting up the inaugural Champions League T20 for the Red Force in 2009, Pollard has made his mark all over the world – and he is not done.
A fierce competitor, brilliant fielder, wily medium-pacer and powerful hitter, there is little Pollard can't do on the field. At 36, his competitive fire has not waned and he is never shy of letting his feelings be known on the field.
Pollard has been in the Caribbean Premier League (CPL) since its inception in 2013 and was originally skipper of the Barbados Tridents (now Barbados Royals). TKR fans can recall Pollard's many friendly clashes with his close friend and former TKR captain Dwayne Bravo as they played a game within a game and relished getting one up on each other.
When it comes to CPL, Pollard's is the prized wicket, as many bowlers have been on the end of his destructive power. There is no boundary big enough when the former West Indies skipper is on the attack.
Bowlers know they have to be perfect against him – or else. Just ask 19-year-old St Kitts and Nevis Patriots leg spinner Izharulhaq Naveed, whom Pollard hit for four monstrous sixes on Sunday – each clearing 100 metres.
There is a belief that Pollard is susceptible to spin, but two years ago he created history for the West Indies with an astounding six sixes in an over against Sri Lankan Akila Dananjaya, in a T20 international.
The legendary player shows little sign of slowing down, and stands at fifth all-time in CPL runs (2,430) with an average of 34.71 and a highest score of 104. At the end of the 2023 CPL, Pollard could leapfrog compatriot Lendl Simmons (2,629 runs) Jamaican Chris Gayle (2,519) into third place.
He's also third ever with most sixes in the CPL (164), just 16 shy of leader Evin Lewis of St Kitts and Nevis Patriots.
Another hallmark of Pollard's game is the intensity and panache he brings to the field. As a teammate and supporter, you'll love him, but it sometimes riles opposing fans.
This friction makes for a great spectacle and Pollard, a consummate showman, is always willing to oblige. Who can forget the boos that greeted him in Guyana in 2019 as he walked to the crease with TKR in trouble against Guyana Amazon Warriors?
After cracking 26 from nine balls to silence the crowd and get the win, Pollard told the media: "In life, if you’re not good, no one speaks about you."
Over a decade in the game, countless trophies, loads of experience and an insatiable desire for success, Pollard continues to be a big name in the T20 format.
With a fifth title up for grabs, Pollard seems keen to lead TKR from the front and put aside the disappointment of last year's campaign. As the greats do, he's always searching for a spark to bring out the edge in his game, and a last-place finish in 2022 is enough motivation for Pollard to will TKR back to the top.