The St Lucia Kings play their first home match of the CPL 2022 season in the second offering on Wednesday when they go up against the table toppers heading into the day in the form of the Jamaica Tallawahs.
The Kings haven’t started their campaign how they would have wanted and will be looking to use home advantage to their favour here. Jamaica certainly did start their tournament as they aimed and are looking to kick on now.
The Jamaica Tallawahs were forecast to struggle a little this season after losing the services of Andre Russell but nobody appears to have told them that as they have won their opening two matches in fine fashion. They battered the St Kitts and Nevis Patriots in their first match before getting the better of the Guyana Amazon Warriors late on in their second game. A third win would have the Tallawahs in a good position to qualify for the knockout stages.
The key to both of the victories has been their bowling. That department has been on song in both of the matches. They were a little sketchy with the bat in the second match but the thing which will really suit the Tallawahs is that their entire order has got the job done over those two matches. In the first game it was the top three that smashed it and then in the second game those deeper in the order got the job done. To have players having had time in the middle and contributed at this stage is a huge positive.
St Lucia Kings
The St Lucia Kings have made a slow start to the competition but there have been mitigating factors along the way. In their opening match against the Trinbago Knight Riders they had to play against potentially the best team in the league without three key players which pretty much never really gave them a chance and then in the second one although they were decimated with the new ball the rain came along and didn’t really give them a chance to rebuild that innings and set it up for the big hitters.
There will certainly be a feeling that the tournament starts here for the Kings. They have four matches in home conditions against their home fans and if they can win at least three of them then they will put themselves in a position to push for a spot in a second consecutive final having gone down to the St Kitts and Nevis Patriots in the closing match last season. In order for those wins to come their top order needs to come to the party.
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This should be a venue where the skills of Rovman Powell can come to the party. He is a big hitter and this ground certainly isn’t big enough to contain him but there might also be a chance he gives himself some overs with the ball too.
Alzarri Joseph has been the best bowler in the tournament so far for the St Lucia Kings but he hasn’t always had the support of his fielders. He showed in the previous game that he can smoke the ball a country mile too which could be useful here.
We’ve seen in the first game of the day that the boundaries are accessible at the Daren Sammy Stadium and that the pitch looks great for batting. With the dew that is often around in the night matches I see no reason why that is going to change and so I think it is worth continuing with the belief that the sixes are going to continue to flow in this tournament. Although we didn’t get much action in St Kitts, the stuff we got showed the night matches to be higher scoring than the day ones.
That isn’t an unfamiliar trend in CPL and it isn’t like these two sides lack big hitters either. We saw all of the Jamaica batting power in their opening match and the home side here have plenty of power within their ranks. There isn’t much in the bowling if the pitches here don’t suit the spinners so we should see a lot of attacking batting in this match which is very much in keeping with the history of this tournament. The sixes line for this one is 14.5 and looks a bit on the low side to me.
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