Denesh Ramdin, roared on by a boisterous home crowd last evening at the Queen’s Park Oval, led the Trinbago Knight Riders (TKR) to an unlikely victory by four wickets over the previously undefeated St. Kitts and Nevis Patriots, with three balls to spare.
Chasing a target of 159, the Knight Riders found themselves needing 70 runs from the last six overs, with Brendon McCullum, 16, Sunil Narine, 5, Darren Bravo, 1, Colin Munro, 36, and Shadab Khan, 3, all back in the pavilion.
Ramdin arrived at the crease in the 7th over, at the fall of Darren Bravo, with the Knight Riders slumping at 42 for 3, and slipping behind the required run rate. With his skipper Dwayne Bravo, Ramdin turned the ship around between the 14th and 18th overs, as they hammered the Patriots attack to the tune of 41 runs, before Bravo was run out for 20 off 12 balls, which included two boundaries and one six.
Javon Searles then joined Ramdin with 29 required off 14 balls. Carlos Brathwaite, 2016 ICC T20 World Cup hero delivered the crucial 19th over, and conceded 18 vital runs, as both Searles and Ramdin struck him for six, with the former chipping in with another boundary.
The last over began with the TKR requiring three runs which they got without further loss, with three balls to spare. Ramdin’s swashbuckling match winning innings of 59 not out, off 35 balls included four sixes and two boundaries, one of the latter going for the winning runs, much to the delight of the home who were on their feet for the last couple of overs as the TKR romped to victory and the first guaranteed place in the playoffs.
Earlier, the Patriots were invited to bat by Bravo and scored 158 for 7 off their 20 overs with opener Sharmah Brooks, 37 off of 32 balls, and Jonathan Carter, 31, being the main contributors. Other useful scores came from Carlos Brathwaite, 19, and Mohammad Nabi, 17. Narine, with 2 for 26 from his four overs was the most successful bowler.
As the losing captain Chris Gayle acknowledged after the match, “These guys are hard to beat at home. Pressure is always going to here with the crowd.”