BASSETERRE, St Kitts – Jamaican Fabian Allen produced a stunning late blitz as St Kitts and Nevis Patriots sent Barbados crashing to two-wicket defeat and their sixth in a row, in the Caribbean Premier League last night.
Yet again, Tridents failed to mount a competitive total after being asked to bat first at Warner Park, and Patriots chased down the target with two balls remaining, to notch their fifth win of the tournament and move to the top of the table on 11 points.
Patriots never found their footing early on in the run chase and stumbled to 92 for six in the 12th over before Man-of-the-Match Allen blasted an unbeaten 64 off 34 deliveries to stage a superb recovery for the hosts.
With 17 required from the last over, however, Tridents remained in the contest but captain Jason Holder inexplicably asked debutant left-arm seamer Dominic Drakes to close out the game and the burden proved too much for the 20-year-old.
Allen smashed the first two balls for straight sixes and then dispatched an errant full toss to the mid-wicket boundary, to leave the scores tied, before scrambling a leg bye off the fourth ball to see his side home.
The defeat was Tridents’ seventh of a wretched campaign which saw them eliminated from playoffs contention following their fifth successive defeat on their home leg which wrapped up last Sunday in Bridgetown.
Nicholas Pooran had earlier top-scored with 44 as Tridents managed only 168 for five, after another lacklustre showing with the bat.
Test batsman Roston Chase, in only his second match of the tournament, struck an unbeaten 38 while Holder got 30 not out and opener Dwayne Smith, 26.
The start was a half decent one with Smith and ICC Americas player Sunny Sohal putting on 45 off 38 balls before the veteran Smith missed a sweep at left-arm spinner Tabraiz Shamsi (2-16) and was lbw in the seventh over.
His dismissal saw a now familiar slide as four wickets went down for 22 runs in the space 24 balls before Pooran, promoted to number three, repaired the innings in a 48-run fifth wicket stand with Chase.
The left-handed Pooran faced 32 deliveries and struck three fours and three sixes before feathering a catch behind off speedster Alzarri Joseph in the 17th over.
With Tridents poised to lose momentum, Chase and Holder combined in a 53-run unbroken sixth-wicket stand to give the innings a rousing finish.
Chase counted two fours and a six in a 28-ball knock while Holder faced only 11 balls and clobbered two fours and three sixes.
In reply, skipper Chris Gayle hammered 22 from 18 balls in a 37-run opening stand with Evin Lewis (19) but once left-arm seamer Mohammed Irfan (3-37) got the left-handed Lewis to sky to mid-wicket in the fourth over, the innings went into a tailspin.
Irfan bowled Rassie van der Dussen (4) two balls later in the same over and when the Pakistani had Gayle tugging a simple catch to mid-on, Tridents were on top.
Wickets continued to tumble until the exciting Allen arrived to pummel six fours and four sixes in a 50-run stand with Ben Cutting (11).
Holder bowled Cutting in the 18th over and left-arm pacer Wahab Riaz also bowled Joseph (7) in the penultimate over to set up a tense finish but Allen held his nerve in the final over to hurt the Tridents.