CPL 2020: Invincible Trinbago Knight Riders lift 4th title

Trinbago Knight Riders

For a T20 team comprising players like Kieron Pollard, Sunil Narine, Dwayne Bravo, Darren Bravo, Lendl Simmons, etc. anything less than a title win would’ve seemed underwhelming. And so Trinbago Knight Riders completed a 12-match unbeaten streak by clinching their fourth Caribbean Premier League trophy on Thursday (September 10).

Rightly so, the Knight Riders have emerged as the first ‘Invincibles’ in the history of CPL. But it wasn’t all hunky-dory for them in the final clash. After having sailed smoothly throughout the league phase, TKR were thrown a few challenges by the St Lucia Zouks.

Captain Pollard steps up

He may have his off days and it would fool people into believing that the power of Kieron Pollard is slowly on the decline. But on the days that matter, the giant West Indian has a knack of turning up with the bat and ball. After winning the toss and putting St Lucia Zouks into bat, Pollard brought his A-game with the ball, finishing with figures of 4/30. It was the Zouks middle order that bore the brunt – the in-form Andre Fletcher and Roston Chase and later, Javelle Glenn. A run-out towards the end acted as the cherry on top.

Fawad Ahmed and Ali Khan bagged two wickets each to bundle out the Zouks for 154 in 19.1 overs.

Record-breaking Simmons

The Knight Riders were dealt a couple of early blows, being reduced to 19/2 in 3.3 overs. But it was the pair of Lendl Simmons and Darren Bravo who took charge and did not look back from thereon. Simmons teed off with a 49-ball 84* that included 8 fours and 4 sixes. His sensational knock took him past his fellow countryman Chris Gayle as the highest run-getter in the tournament’s history.

From the other end, Bravo also accelerated with an unbeaten 58 off 47 balls with 2 fours and 6 sixes. At one point, the Knight Riders were on a steep chase of less than run-a-ball. But it was Bravo’s late assault that really took the game away from the Zouks. In the 17th over, both Simmons and Bravo looted 23 runs off Zahir Khan. From there, it was just a mere formality.

What made this win even sweeter was that fact that the Knight Riders did it without some of their star players, Sunil Narine (who did not play) and Dwayne Bravo (who did not bat or bowl). Their captain was just more than enough to shine in both departments. Simmons, coming off two fifties in the last three matches, peaked at just the right time. TKR didn’t even the need the full quota of 20 overs, completing the chase in 18.1 overs.