In the 2nd semi-final of CPL 2020, it is the Guyana Amazon Warriors featuring against St Lucia Zouks for a place in the final. The Warriors have made it to the play-off or semi-finals in every season of the CPL, on the other hand, this will be Zouks' second appearance. The Guyanese have won 4 out of their 7 appearances on the big stage, which adds to the pressure for Zouks who lost their only appearance prior to this.
In the league stages, both teams had won one match apiece. Zouks had defended 145 in the first match and the Warriors had chased 110 in the second. In the last 5 encounters between the two, Warriors have won three. Overall as well, the Warriors have an edge over the Zouks with a 66.6% win percentage.
HEAD TO HEAD
Overall: Matches – 15 | GAW – 10 Wins | SLZ – 5 Wins
At Venue: Matches – 2 | GAW – 1 Win | SLZ – 1 Win
Last 5 matches: GAW – 3 Wins | SKNP – 2 Wins
While you could go for the above team, you also have the option of choosing your own team from cricket.com Fantasy Research Centre. Based on algorithms we come up with six different teams that could fetch crucial points.
Throughout this season, it was evident that the bowlers had a say at the Brian Lara Stadium. The bowlers have bagged wickets every 18.6 deliveries for 22.5 runs.
The surface has been on the slower side, which has made batsmen’s life difficult, especially against the spinners. Teams have struggled to score runs against the spinners freely, a run rate 6.1 against them is a corroboration of it.
Since 2018, against the spinners in CPL, batsmen have scored 6.3 runs every over which is the joint-lowest among all venues. Both teams have a healthy set of spinners who can trouble the batsmen.
This season of CPL has belonged to the spinners. They have bowled the most percentage of overs (53.9%) and bagged the most percentage of wickets (49.8). At this venue as well, the spinners have bowled the most overs, but, the pacers have a slight upper hand when it comes to taking wickets. The pacers have bagged 51.2% of wickets as compared to spinners' 48.8%.
The Guyana bowling unit has been tremendous this season, their batting may have let them down but never has their bowling. At this venue, Guyana have bagged 54 wickets every 15 runs and 15.2 balls, which are the best among the lot. The Zouks aren’t bad either, their bowlers have bagged 45 wickets every 22.4 runs and 17.4 balls which is the third-best among all teams.
As far as their batting is concerned, both teams have had their issues. Hence, looking at the volume of success both team's bowlers have had, packing it with bowlers is the best way to score points.
Shimron Hetmyer has been the lone wolf among the Guyanese batting line-up this season, on that account, there is no second thought in his selection. Though Brandon King hasn’t had a good season, his record in the knockouts are pretty good, which makes a case for his selection. Roston Chase and Mohammad Nabi are sure picks among the allrounders.
Imran Tahir, Scott Kuggeleijn and Kesrick Williams are the red-hot picks among bowlers. Naveen-ul-Haq has been impressive this season. Javelle Glen, the Warriors skipper Chris Green, Keemo Paul have all done well, which makes them strong contenders for the team.
There could be a few interesting match-ups too.
BRANDON KING vs SCOTT KUGGELEIJN
Kuggeleijn has put on some authoritative performance against the Warriors opener. King in both the matches in their league stage was dismissed by Kuggeleijn and that too cheaply. Can Kuggeleijn repeat what he has been doing? Or will King come out on top is to be seen.
MOHAMMAD NABI vs IMRAN TAHIR
Nabi has had his struggles against Tahir in T20s. The lower middle-order dasher has played against Tahir in 5 innings and has got out to him on three occasions with a strike rate of 117.4
ANDRE FLETCHER vs IMRAN TAHIR
Fletcher’s performance this season has been below-par and his miseries won't end there as he will be facing one of his nightmare bowlers. In 5 innings he has scored runs at a strike rate of 41.7 and got out to Tahir twice.
SHIMRON HETMYER: Hetmyer has been the luminary of Guyana’s batting line-up this season. His 267 runs this season is the second-most by a batsman in CPL 2020. He alongside Andre Russell are the only two batsmen to have 3 or more 50+ scores. He scored an unbeaten 56 against the Zouks in his last encounter, which suggests his good run against them.
The fascinating part of his batting is his innings progression during the middle overs. He has scored 164 runs during this phase and has been dismissed only once in 6 innings. The 164 runs have come at a decent strike rate of 135.5
Our Criclytics player projector predicts, Hetmyer would score 15-34 runs in the 2nd semi-final
IMRAN TAHIR: Older the wine, the better it gets. The 41-year-old has been a warhorse for Guyana this season with his performances. His 15 wickets this year is the joint-highest this season. 22.4% of Guyana’s wickets has been bagged by Tahir at a balls/dismissal ratio of 15.6.
Tahir loves bowling in the powerplay overs this season. 6 wickets out of his 15 wickets have come during this phase at every 10 balls. Among bowlers who have bowled more than 10 overs during the 1st six overs, his balls/dismissal ratio of 10.0 is the best. With abilities to strike early, Tahir is an X-factor who is ought to fetch points.
Our Criclytics player projector predicts, Tahir would bag 0-3 wickets in the 2nd semi-final.
JAVELLE GLEN: Glenn has been a game-changer for Zouks in the three innings he has bowled for them. He has bagged 6 wickets this season at an economy of less than 5 and he has picked those wickets every 8 balls and 6 runs. His balls/wicket ratio of 8.0 is the best among all the bowlers who have 5 or more wickets.
Glen has been handy with the bat as well for the Zouks with 59 runs at a strike rate of 111.9. If his bowling is an x-factor, his batting is a reward.
SCOTT KUGGELEIJN: The Kiwi pacer till now has had a good debut season and the Zouks would want him to continue and take the onus of guiding them to their first CPL final. His 14 wickets are the most by a pacer in CPL 2020. He has bagged those wickets every 12.1 balls, which is also the best among all bowlers who have bowled more than 15 overs.
In their 1st match against the Warriors in the league stage (Match 10) Kuggeleijn bagged 3 crucial wickets that played a role in Zouks' win. Zouks would want a similar performance from the pacer yet again.
Our Criclytics player projector predicts, Kuggeleijn would pick 0-1 wicket in the 2nd semi-final.