The CPL 2021 tournament concluded on September 15 with a scintillating finale. St. Kitts and Nevis Patriots won the finals by three wickets over the St. Lucia Kings, and they did so dramatically on the last ball of the match.
The Patriots, therefore, captured their first title in the franchise’s history. The tournament produced tremendous performances from the recognized stars, a few young talents emerged, and one player even resurrected his international career. In this article, we select the top 5 West Indian players to appear in the tournament.
Number 5 Romario Shepherd
The Guyana Amazon Warriors benefited from the tremendous all-around performances of Romario. The Guyanese right-arm fast bowler showed his potency to get wickets and at an economical rate. He finished tied for second with 18 wickets in the standings and did so in just nine games. He had a tremendous average of 14.88 and had a best of 3 wickets for 15 runs.
He has proven to be a crafty bowler which was on display in his man-of-the-match performance in match 11 against the Knight Riders. After securing 3 wickets for 24 runs in the game, he showed his brilliance by giving up only 4 runs and taking the wicket of Kieron Pollard as he defended just six runs in the Super Over.
He flashed his potential with the bat in a scorching 72 of 44 balls against the Jamaica Tallawahs and finished the tournament with 109 runs. Sadly, he did not force his way into the T-20 World Cup squad but this young player has a bright future.
Number 4 Odean Smith
Odean could be considered the breakout star of the tournament. The 24-year-old Jamaican consistently hounded batsmen with his pace and was able to pick up 18 wickets in 11 matches. According to cricinfo.com, he had a tremendous bowling average of 14.88 and had a best of 3 wickets for 20 runs.
Smith showed he has improved in all aspects of his game, and the results are seen in his batting. The Warriors elevated him a few times to number 3 in the lineup to attack the opposition but he later returned to the lower middle order.
In 11 innings, he scored 126 runs and smashed 12 sixes and 6 fours. In his first match, he won man-of-the-match against the Trinbago Knight Riders for his 24 runs off 15 balls and taking 2 wickets for 10 runs. He did not get selected for the T-20 World Cup yet his performance showed that he will soon get his opportunity at the international stage.
Number 3 Evan Lewis
As an established star in the West Indies team, Lewis proved that he will be the backbone of the batting lineup in the upcoming World Cup. As the opener, he led the charge for the St. Kitts Patriots to their first CPL title. In 11 innings, Evan scored a whopping 426 runs at an average of 47.33. His best performance was a brilliant 102 off 52 balls against the Knight Riders as he sealed a playoff spot. The man of the match performance included five 4s and eleven 6s. He delivered another man-of-the-match performance in the semifinal by scoring 77 not out from 39 balls as the Patriots chased down 179 runs with 2.1 overs to spare.
Number 2 Ravi Rampaul
Ravi can be considered the Comeback Player of the Tournament. Many fans and pundits have felt that Rampaul’s T-20 career was over. In fact, before the tournament, the last time he appeared in a T-20 game was in 2019. Ravi showed that he was not sitting idle on his hands but he worked hard to improve his game. The veteran seamer’s effort was successful because Ravi ended the tournament as the leading wicket-taker with 19 wickets.
Rampaul rejuvenated his bowling with swing, seam, and even a burst of speed. In the exciting Super Over game against the Knight Riders, he picked up four wickets for 27 runs. Rampaul’s hard work paid off with his selection into the T-20 World Cup team.
Number 1 Roston Chase
Roston Chase was the MVP of the tournament. Chase has established himself as a player in the test team but was never really considered a T20 player. He silenced the critics with a brilliant all-around display in this tournament. He played in 12 matches and scored a chart-topping 446 runs at an average of 49.55. Chase never scored a century in the tournament but had 4 fifties, scored in double-digit 10 times, and had a best score of 85.
While he had a tremendous performance with the bat, he also delivered with the ball in his hand. He picked up 10 wickets which rank 17th on the wickets chart. He was able to capture wickets regularly and at an economical rate of 6.92. Chase’s T20 evolution caught the eye of the selection panel and forced their hands to name him in the team.
Readers Bureau, Contributor
Edited by Jesus Chan
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