The perennial bridesmaids meet 2017’s losing finalists. The Guyana Amazon Warriors have been the nearly team throughout the history of the CPL, advancing to the final five times but never claiming the title. St Kitts & Nevis Patriots finished runner-up four years ago, coincidentally during Chris Gayle’s first rodeo with this year’s host franchise, and he is now back trying to turn a silver medal into gold.
The first half of this campaign saw these teams in far different situations to the ones they enter the playoffs in. The Patriots shot like a cannon out of the gates, winning their first five matches behind the sizzling form of Sherfane Rutherford, who scored three fifties in that stretch. But as Rutherford’s bat has cooled down, so have the Patriots as a whole, winning just one of their last five league games.
The Amazon Warriors, meanwhile, only won two of their first five – needing a Super Over to get over the line in one of them – but have since won four out of five with different heroes stepping up on each occasion. Whether it has been Gudakesh Motie, Romario Shepherd, Odean Smith, or the captain Nicholas Pooran, the Warriors have been resilient thanks to a variety of match-winning performances. The Warriors come into this match with all the momentum but if the Patriots can rekindle their early-season form, it could be the formula for an exciting semi-final.