IPL: Indian Premier League 2009

Eagles aim to ground high-flying T&T


hamiltonMatch facts
Sunday October 18
Start time 20.00 (14.30 GMT)

Big Picture

A game between two under-rated teams that have shown they are not to be trifled with. Trinidad & Tobago are one of the two unbeaten teams in the tournament, emphasising their dangerousness with a stunning four-wicket victory in a high-scoring encounter against a strong New South Wales on Friday.

With four points and a solid net run-rate (+1.438) they have one foot in the semi-finals; only an embarrassing big defeat to Eagles couple with a New South Wales win over Somerset can jeopardise their chances. Their trio of spinners have proved hard to handle, allrounder Dwayne Bravo is the tournament’s leading wicket-taker, captain Daren Ganga is winning plaudits for his inspired leadership and their young aggressive batsmen have piled on the runs - not much to complain about for T&T so far.

They need to be wary of their opponents on Sunday, the Eagles, who have improved with every game. They were outclassed by NSW in their opening game, scraped through to the second round courtesy the win over Sussex through the one-over eliminator, and sauntered to a convincing five-wicket victory over Somerset. They need a massive victory against T&T to boost their abysmal net run-rate (-1.107) to qualify for the semi-final (though a win by any margin will do if NSW lose to Somerset earlier in the day). One of the Eagles’ strengths is their fast-bowling allrounders - Ryan McLaren, Alan Kruger, Dillon du Preez - who ensure they bat deep and give Boeta Dippenaar plenty of bowling options.

Watch out for
In the opening rounds, Kieron Pollard set tongues wagging more with his funky hairstyles than his cricketing prowess. After he dismantled Moises Henriques on his way to a jaw-dropping 18-ball 54 against NSW, it is his big-hitting that is getting all the attention. Powell’s batting prowess and exuberant personality should make him irresistible to IPL teams; the ka-ching of a fat contract can’t be far away.

Morne van Wyk was a pivotal member of the Eagles’ run to the finals of the Pro20 earlier this year. He was the highest run-getter in that tournament, and has proved to be the glue that holds a top-order together here as well. An unfussy 47 against Somerset which ensured the small target was easily overhauled showcased his value.
Source:Cricket News

Image Source:Cricinfo

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