Patriots hold off late Tridents charge

Pollard produced a fighting effort, with his score far and away the biggest contribution of thematch from either side. Pollard started the final over on strike with his side needing 19 to win and proceeded to hit a four and six off the second and third balls of the over, bowled by Orlando Peters, breaking the equation down to nine off three balls. After a bouncer that sailed over the head was signaled a no ball, it became eight off three.

A single off the fourth legal ball put Stewart on strike, who had yet to face a ball after entering one ball into the 19th over at the fall of Robin Peterson.

Stewart sliced a four over short third man to bring his side within one stroke of an unlikely win. Peters bowled a shin-high full toss, but Stewart could only flick it straight to Sheldon Cottrell at deep square leg. Cottrell charged in and fired a throw to the striker’s end where Pollard was run out halfway down the pitch, coming back for a second that would have tied the game and sent it to a Super Over.

Tridents would have prevailed had the third umpire given Pollard a four off the third ball of the penultimate over bowled by Sohail Tanvir. Pollard jammed a yorker towards the boundary and despite Shahid Afridi touching the ropes, it was only called two, leaving Tridents ruing.

Patriots had been inserted after the start was delayed by rain. Peters proved crucial in the first innings as well, top-scoring with 27 at No.4. Patriots got off to a strong start on the back of Martin Guptill’s 23 off 15, finishing the power play at 41 for 1, but struggled for momentum thereafter as Tridents struck at regular intervals. Carlos Brathwaite then cracked an unbeaten 22 off 10 balls, including a four and six off the final two balls of the first innings, to give Patriots some late impetus.

The visitors appeared to have made a costly error on the first ball of the third over of Tridents chase when Evin Lewis spilled Dwayne Smith at deep square leg on eight off the bowling of Cottrell. Tanvir took the first wicket when he removed Dilshan Munaweera in the fourth over for two while Cottrell dismissed Smith for 10 the next over.

A ball later, Cottrell induced a leading edge off Jonathan Carter to make it three wickets in seven balls, reducing Tridents to 14 for 3 in five overs. Pollard and Malik came together to hit back with a 93-run stand spanning 12 overs to put Tridents in with a shot at victory. They were left needing 37 off three overs with six wickets in hand when Malik was stumped charging down the wicket to Afridi. In the end though, the early deficit was too big to dig out of.


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