Harry Gurney and Johnson Charles fire Barbados Tridents to second spot | Cricket








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Barbados Tridents 135 for 3 (Charles 55, Hales 33, Deyal 1-17) beat Trinbago Knight Riders 134 for 8 (Simmons 60, Gurney 2-14, Shakib 2-25, Walsh Jr. 2-34) by seven wickets

After finding themselves in a do-or-die match against St. Lucia Zouks on Sunday, Barbados Tridents might wind up with a crack at advancing straight to the CPL Final for the first time since 2015 after completing a rare sweep of the Trinbago Knight Riders.

Back-to-back wins over the Zouks and Knight Riders – by seven wickets at Queen’s Park Oval – have vaulted the Tridents from fifth into second place on 10 points, holding a net run rate edge over the Patriots.

Another superb night from the tournament’s leading wicket-taker Hayden Walsh Jr. and Player of the Match Harry Gurney – who bowled brilliantly at the death – picked four wickets out of the hand and another via a run out to restrict the Knight Riders to 134 for 8 after they elected to bat. Then, Johnson Charles piloted a cool chase with 55 off 47 balls.

The defending CPL champs have gone ice cold after starting off with four straight wins. The Knight Riders now must beat the undefeated Guyana Amazon Warriors at Providence in the final match of the league phase or else they’ll be forced into an elimination playoff match against the Patriots.

American success at Queen’s Park Oval

A year after USA fast bowler Ali Khan sparked the Knight Riders run to a second straight CPL title, legspinner Walsh Jr left his mark. After ripping through the Knight Riders in the first match-up between the two sides at Kensington Oval with 5 for 19, Walsh Jr. was at it again.

Brought on in the seventh over, Walsh Jr. struck with his first ball in the ninth to break up a 52-run stand with a lovely flighted googly to dismiss Colin Munro for 23. The ball to dismiss Darren Bravo in the 11th was just as good. Set up the ball before with a flighted delivery that had him in two minds, he followed it up with a flatter one that skidded through to cramp him for room and crash into the stumps off an inside edge.

Walsh Jr.’s night wasn’t done though. After missing a clear run-out chance off Lendl Simmons in the fourth over from backward point, he wouldn’t blow another opportunity from the same position in the 18th, firing a direct hit at the non-striker’s end after Javon Searles was slow responding to a call from Denesh Ramdin. This came on the back of Gurney dismissing Kieron Pollard.

The double-strike killed momentum at the end of the Knight Riders innings after Simmons had set them up with 60 off 45 balls. Gurney struck again on the penultimate ball of the innings, trapping Ramdin leg before as part of a marvelous five-run 20th that left the Knight Riders flummoxed.

More to follow

Peter Della Penna is ESPNcricinfo’s USA correspondent @PeterDellaPenna


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