The Riders and the Tridents square off in the third game of this season's Caribbean Premier League on Saturday morning.
Game three of the highly-anticipated Caribbean Premier League see the brilliantly named Trinbago Knight Riders take on the Barbados Tridents in a match which will see some huge international T20 stars going up against each other in what, on paper, should be an absolute cracker.
Riders vs Tridents | Saturday 2 July | Trinidad and Tobago | 03:00
To Win Match
Riders 7/10 | Tie 35/1| Tridents 11/10
Trinbago, who lost their opening game to the St Lucia Zouks, have the likes of Hashim Amla, Sulieman Benn, Dwayne and Darren Bravo, Kevon Cooper (who was inexplicably missing during this years IPL), Brendon McCullum, Colin Munro, Sunil Narine, Umar Akmal and a blast from the past in Ramnaresh Sarwan.
Now looking at that squad one can see why Trinbago, formerly “Trinidad & Tobago Red Steel”, are one of the early tournament favourites. This is also the side that won the tournament last year and have managed to keep a the core of the players who helped them to the trophy. They are coached by Simon Helmot who was formerly the coach of the Melbourne Renegades in the Big Bash and are captained by Dwayne Bravo.
The Riders, who are owned by Shah Rukh Khan (of the Kolkata Knight Riders), lost their opening match against St Lucia but don’t look too much into that as we have seen that good early season form in T20 competitions does not always lead to success later in the competition. In fact teams that start off badly quite often go on to win a few games in a row and go deep into tournaments. Darren Bravo appears to have found some form after the Tri Series with Australia and South Africa and he tucked into the likes of Morne Morkel in the tournament opener. McCullum and Amla make for a strong opening partnership with the likes of Munro and the older Bravo and Akmal adding to a strong line-up.
Bowling wise, Nikita Miller has international experience, Narine is a match winner, Dwayne Bravo is always good for a wicket or two and Benn and Cooper make a very good, West Indian bowling lineup which certainly has some good credentials and were unlucky to run into Johnson Charles in good form and even more unlucky in that David Miller managed to score more than 20 for the first time since the first day of May.
Barbados are not short of international pedigree themselves, AB de Villiers, Jason Holder, Ashley Nurse, Wayne Parnell, Kieron Pollard (captain), Ravi Rampaul, Shoaib Malik, David Wiese and commentator Robin Peterson are all on the Trident’s roster this season. The Tridents finished last season at the top of the points table only to lose out in the final to their opponents in this game. They are coached by Robin Singh who is currently the Mumbai Indians batting coach and former head coach.
They will be a strong side with a strong batting line-up and expect the likes of Kyle Corbin, Steven Taylor (who is a United States international), David wise and Shoaib Malik to provide able support to De Villiers and Pollard who will be looking to score a massive total. Remember, Trinbago’s bowling line-up consists almost entirely of West Indian bowlers and it would appear that AB De Villiers enjoys facing their bowling.
On the bowling front the Tridents are certainly well stocked, Ravi Rampaul, Parnell, Peterson, Nurse, Wiese and Jason Holder form part of what definitely can be a special bowling attack. Parnell has been in decent form, Wiese is one of the world’s best T20 bowlers and Robin Peterson has found success in this tournament in the past.
Verdict : Riders to win at 7/10
Despite the odds being in favour of Trinbago I reckon this game will be quite a tight one. Both sides have match winners and feature extremely strong batting line ups. I am going to side with the team from Trinidad & Tobago here. After their first loss they will need a win to get their season up and running and will not want to lose two in a row at their home ground. Back Trinbago to win here, but I can easily see it going either way.
Written by Dale Vos for @Hollywoodbets.