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We are almost midway through the Caribbean Premier League and things are beginning to take shape beautifully. With St Kitts and Nevis Patriots getting their first win, all teams are well and truly in contention and the table is wide open. There's one team, however, that seems to be flying way higher than the rest, and that team is Trinbago Knight Riders. TKR has been the best team of the tournament thus far, but with other teams gearing up quickly for the challenge, it will be interesting to see if the Knight Riders will be able to retain its supremacy.
Up next in the competition, the Knight Riders will be facing Guyana Amazon Warriors, who they defeated in the first match of the competition. Before the tournament started, the two teams were the favorites to emerge on top, but there appears to be massive daylight between the two teams now. Not much has changed on paper, however, and the two teams are perfect candidates to produce a cracker of a contest. The match is to be played at Queen's Park Oval at Port of Spain, on 27th August 2020.
After losing to Trinbago Knight Riders in their first match, the Warriors bounced back with a couple of terrific wins to occupy a slot in the top half of the table. With a narrow loss to Jamaica Tallawahs in their most recent encounter, the Warriors may not have dropped down the ladder, but has certainly put them in a spot of bother. They have played the most number of games in the competition and have four points to their name with a net run-rate of 0.048.
Guyana Amazon Warriors produced yet another poor batting display in their previous match. Not many would have expected a team that had Shimron Hetmyer and Ross Taylor to crumble as they did against Jamaica Tallawahs - twice. Batting first on a surface that didn't have any demons, the Warriors had a forgetful day. They crawled their way to a total of 108, which proved to be a walk in the park for the Tallawahs. In the five matches that the Warriors have played, their over-reliance on Hetmyer has been apparent. With only Ross Taylor and Nicholas Pooran getting some runs apart from Hetmyer, the Warriors' batting appears to be in total shambles.
While their batting hasn't done anything substantial in the last few matches, there bowling has certainly stepped up the game. The likes of Imran Tahir, Naveen ul Haq, Keemo Paul, and Ashmead Nedd have all been brilliant. They were terrific against Tallawahs in the earlier game, but there's only so much that they could do in the subsequent match.
On paper, nothing has changed and Guyana Amazon Warriors is still a terrific team, at least on paper. However, the form of their top-order is a cause of concern and will continue to be so, until their top-order gets consistent. If that happens, beating the Warriors will not be as easy as it is now.
Nicholas Pooran, Ross Taylor, Shimron Hetmyer, Brandon King, Sherfane Rutherford, Keemo Paul, Christopher Green, Chandrapaul Hemraj, Imran Tahir, Naveen-ul-Haq, Romario Shepherd.
Going by the way things have gone in the competition, the Trinbago juggernaut seems to be unstoppable. They have been unbeatable so far and going by their performance against St Lucia till the halfway stage, that trend is likely to stay.
The Knight Riders got off to a superb start and have only improved since then. Barring Lendl Simmons, almost all of their batsmen have looked comfortable in the middle and it is only a matter of time before Simmons finds his feet as well. Resting Sunil Narine against the Zouks didn't seem to have any impact whatsoever on their bowling, and that speaks volumes about the versatility of their bowling attack. Dwayne Bravo looked at his vintage best against St Lucia and was ably supported by the likes of Fawad Ahmed and Khary Pierre, who didn't allow the Zouks to get away with the big shots.
On the batting front, there's hardly any team that matches the Knight Riders in terms of hitting-power and consistency. With several players having international experience up their sleeve, the Knight Riders have no dearth of experience. The likes of Daren Bravo, Kieron Pollard, and Colin Munro are capable to tear apart any bowling attack. Having Dwayne Bravo to come in at number seven is evidence enough to illustrate the depth in the batting the Knight Riders have. The only team change, although improbable, we expect Trinbago Knight Riders to do is to bring back Sunil Narine in place of Pravin Tambe.
There is no doubt about the kind of performance the Knight Riders have exhibited. However, do they have enough fuel to keep their juggernaut moving? With experience oozing through their lineup, the chances of a failure happening are minuscule. They are not over-dependent on a single player, be it in bowling or in batting - and that is their biggest strength. Beating them is going to be a hard task for any team, let alone Warriors, who don't appear to having the greatest of times.
Tim Seifert, LMP Simmons, Colin Munro, Darren Bravo, Tion Webster, Kieron Pollard, Dwayne Bravo, Sikandar Raza, Fawad Ahmed, Khary Pierre, Ali Khan.
Going by the limited number of matches that have been played on the surface so far, the surface at Queen's Park Oval seems to be better suited for batting as compared to the one at Brian Lara Cricket Academy. The weather as well has improved over the past week and rain is unlikely to play any part in this match. Considering the recent results and slowing nature of the surface, taking pace off the ball will be important. The team batting first should be looking to put a total of at least 165 runs on the board.
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We are not even at the halfway stage in the competition and the toss already seems to be playing a vital role. Chasing totals above 150 has been difficult in the tournament and that could prove to be the case yet again. Having said that, the dew is likely to be a factor in this match, and that will tempt captains to choose to field. Fielding first should be the way to go for the team winning the toss in this match.
Check out the Dream11 fantasy team lineup for the upcoming Caribbean Premier League 2020 match between Guyana Amazon Warrior and Trinbago Knight Riders. Don't forget to check the updated team right after the toss.
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There is a stark contrast between the performances of the two teams taking on each other in this contest. While Guyana Amazon Warriors have had a stop-and-start kind of campaign, the Trinbago Knight Riders have been flawless. The Warriors will be staring into must-win scenarios if they fail to do anything of substance in their next couple of games. That is likely to put immense pressure on their already struggling lineup. TKR, on the other hand, seems to be marching ahead with no stop in picture, and are, therefore, our pick to place the bets on, in the upcoming encounter.
As is clear from the performances of the two sides, the Warriors looks far from settled. Their openers have failed to get them off to good starts and with Ross Taylor has been taking his own sweet time to get going. Their over-reliance of Shimron Hetmyer to score quickly is apparent. Considering that as well as the fact that the Knight Riders have been decent inside the powerplay, betting on Knight Riders to have a better score after the end of the first six overs should be the way to go.
Guyana Amazon Warriors' batting has been dismal and it is evident by their scores in their last two matches. Almost all of their batsmen have struggled in the tournament and that is contrary to how those of Knight Riders have done. Considering that there is high probability for this to happen again, this could prove to be a low-risk high-reward bet.
Darren Bravo is known for his skills in the longer format of the game. His form in this format has not only been surprising, but effective as well. He is arguably the most consistent as well as reliable batsmen from the Trinbago Knight Riders' camp and, is therefore, likely to be the top-scorer for them in this upcoming encounter as well. Bet on Darren Bravo to be the top-scorer for Trinbago Knight Riders.
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