Best still to come from Patriots, warns skipper Samuels

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, CMC – Skipper Marlon Samuels has promised there is more exciting cricket to come from St Kitts and Nevis Patriots, following their first win of the Caribbean Premier League last weekend.

Marlon Samuels
Marlon Samuels

Patriots, the new franchise in this year’s competition, upset the previously unbeaten Barbados Tridents last Saturday at Kensington Oval when they bowled brilliantly to pull off a one-run victory.

“There’s still a lot of room to improve and this team hasn’t played to their full potential as yet, and you’re going to see some brilliant cricket from the Patriots,” said Samuels.

“We’re coming together, putting everything in order so the team is definitely gelling and the dressing room has been wonderful.”

Patriots opened the tournament on a losing note last week, going down to hosts St Lucia Zouks in Gros Islet by seven wickets. Sent in by the Tridents in their second match, they posted 143 for eight and then defied a top score of 82 from captain Kieron Pollard, to inch home off the last ball.

They reduced the Tridents to 14 for three in the fifth over before drying up the runs during the middle overs, and forcing the required run rate up to nearly 13 at one point.

Samuels said he had been forced to make several adjustments, but was always in control of the situation.

“I backed my spinners to bring me through the middle overs but the conditions changed where the spinners couldn’t grip the ball so I had to bring back [seamer] Orlando Peters,” the Jamaican explained.

“At the 17th over, I knew I had [Sohail] Tanvir with all that experience to come and give me a couple dot balls, maybe give me a wicket here and there and that’s how I looked to finish off the game.”

With 28 runs required from the last two overs, left-arm seamer Tanvir sent down the penultimate over which cost just nine, leaving 19 to get from the last over. Peters then held his nerve to restrict the Tridents, and Samuels said keeping calm had been key to the win in the late stages.

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