All-round Knight Riders thump Stars in CPL 2018 opener

Dwayne Bravo and Fawad Ahmed bagged three-wicket hauls and backed up the efforts of Colin Munro and Denesh Ramdin – who had scored half-centuries, to help Trinbago Knight Riders register a thumping 100-run victory against St. Lucia Stars in the opening clash of Caribbean Premier League 2018.

Put in to bat, Knight Riders’ explosive opening pair of Sunil Narine and Chris Lynn failed to fire. But it was Munro’s early assault which held the attention and also the command on the scoreboard. Qais Ahmed bore the maximum brunt of Munro’s attack, getting hit for three fours and a six off consecutive deliveries in the ninth over. Despite limited contributions from the other end, he stitched a 40-run stand with Narine and Brendon McCullum for successive stands and powered the team to 88 for 3 in 10 overs.

Despite a brief wobble, where McCullum and Darren Bravo fell in quick succession, Munro held the charge firm, and in company of Ramdin, pressed the accelerator harder. In a matter of 5.2 overs, they added 59 runs for the fifth wicket – the maiden fifty stand of the tournament. The left-hander hit nine boundaries and a six in his 48-ball 68 before getting bowled by Kieron Pollard.

Ramdin, however, ensured the early platform didn’t go wasted. He smashed four sixes and two fours en route his unbeaten 27-ball 50 as Knight Riders powered their way to 195 for 6.

Stars began the chase in a positive manner with Andre Fletcher scoring a flurry of boundaries to help his team move to 35 within three overs. However, his outing came to an abrupt halt as he was bowled by Ali Khan after missing a slog. A major collapse ensued following the departure of Fletcher, beginning with the dismissals of David Warner and Rahkeem Cornwall inside the powerplay.

Reduced to 47 for 3 at the end of the sixth over, Fawad Ahmed and Sunil Narine added to Stars’ woes by picking up three wickets between them in two overs to leave them reeling at 53 for 6. There was a brief period of resistance as Qais Ahmad and Kieron Pollard tried to build a partnership, although the scoring rate was nothing to boast about.

Fawad ended a 24-run partnership, picking up his third wicket with the dismissal of Ahmad. Pollard and Mitchell McClenaghan followed in quick succession, both getting out to Dwayne Bravo while Shannon Gabriel picked up the final wicket – that of Mohammad Sami – which meant that all the Knight Riders bowlers had picked up at least one wicket.

Brief scores: Trinbago Knight Riders 195/6 in 20 overs (Colin Munro 68, Denesh Ramdin 50*; Kieron Pollard 2-22) beat St. Lucia Stars 95 in 17.3 overs (Andre Fletcher 19; Dwayne Bravo 3-11, Fawad Ahmed 3-16) by 100 runs.

Source: Cricbuzz Staff

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