BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, CMC – South African Wayne Parnell turned in a strong all-round performance as Barbados Tridents kept their slim playoff hopes alive with a 16-run victory over leaders Trinbago Knight Riders here Saturday night.
With Tridents floundering at 62 for seven in the 10th over, Parnell stepped up to stroke an unbeaten 44 off 35 balls to help the hosts up to 136 for nine off their 20 overs at Kensington Oval.
Shamar Springer chipped in with 21 but none of the Tridents vaunted top order came off, as Pakistan leg-spinner Shadab Khan led a strong TKR bowling effort with two for 13 from his four overs.
In reply, the visitors struggled to find their footing throughout the run chase and subsided to 120 all out, with eight deliveries left.
Fast bowler Javon Searles, batting at number nine, top-scored with 29 off 21 deliveries while New Zealand opener Brendon McCullum was forced to retire hurt on 26 after being struck on the arm by Parnell in the sixth over.
Captain Dwayne Bravo chimed in with 22 but the trio were the only ones in double figures, as Parnell captured three for 31 and Pakistan seamer Wahab Riaz (2-24) and medium pacer Pollard (2-26) supported with two wickets apiece.
The victory left Tridents in fifth spot on eight points but two behind fourth placed Guyana Amazon Warriors in the race for the final playoff spot.
Tridents will now need to trounce St Kitts and Nevis Patriots by a huge margin on Sunday in order to eclipse Amazon Warriors who currently possess a superior net run rate.
Sent in, Tridents had a nightmare start when prolific opener Dwayne Smith nibbled at the second ball of the match from fast bowler Anderson Phillip and was caught at the wicket without a run on the board.
When New Zealander Kane Williamson also perished to a catch at the wicket off pacer Javon Searles for six with the score on seven in the next over, the Tridents were in deeper trouble.
Opener Nicholas Pooran led a brief revival in a 24-run, third wicket stand with Eoin Morgan (2), blasting two fours and a six in an 11-ball knock but he holed out in the deep off off-spinner Ashley Nurse, triggering a slide that saw five wickets tumble for 31 runs.
Parnell then took charge, belting three fours and a four as he put on 48 for the eighth wicket with Springer who struck two fours, to rally the innings.
TKR’s usual opening salvo never materialised as Parnell knocked over Sunil Narine (9) and Colin Munro (2) cheaply in successive overs to leave the score on 26 for two in the fourth over.
Further disappointment followed when McCullum was forced off and TKR were really up against it when Darren Bravo stabbed one from seamer Ravi Rampaul which bounced, to be caught low down at point by Williamson in the seventh over for four.
With wickets clattering around him, Dwayne Bravo tried to lead a revival but his dismissal, caught on the point bounday off Springer in the 15th over at 85 for seven, left them in dire straits.
Searles lashed three fours and a six off 21 deliveries to cause a few anxious moments at the end but Wahab returned to settle the issue in the penultimate over.