Barbados Tridents made a winning start to their 2018 Caribbean Premier League campaign as Shai Hope’s maiden T20 fifty and a five-wicket haul for Raymon Reifer secured a 30-run win over Guyana Amazon Warriors.
Asked to bat first, Tridents openers Dwayne Smith and Martin Guptill fell early in the piece. But Hope plundered 88 from just 45 balls and shared a 105-run partnership with Steve Smith (41), before wicket-keeper Nicholas Pooran smashed three sixes in an unbeaten 45 from 27 to lift the Tridents to 185/4 from their 20 overs.
It was a total that always looked beyond the Amazon Warriors. After Chadwick Walton was trapped earlier on by Jason Holder, in-form Shimron Hetmyer briefly threatened something special as he raced to 22 from eight balls with two sixes and two fours. But he fell into a Tridents trap when he slapped Reifer to Martin Guptill at wide long-on the ball after Luke Ronchi had skied a simple catch to Ashley Nurse.
Sherfane Rutherford and Shoaib Malik steadied the ship, but it was slow going with 44 balls eaten up to take the partnership to 50. The acceleration did eventually come from Malik, but there was by then just too much for the Amazon Warriors to do.
Shoaib did pass a significant landmark during his 30-ball 38, becoming only the fourth man in history to reach 8000 career T20 runs and sit alongside short-form legends Chris Gayle, Brendon McCullum and Kieron Pollard.
With big hits needed, Rutherford was guilty of losing his shape and trying to hit the ball too hard. His strike-rate dipped below 100 as Holder gave up just four runs from his final over to leave the Amazon Warriors needing an unlikely 53 from the last three overs.
Rutherford did manage to clear the ropes in the 18th over to reduce the target to 39 from the last 12 balls, but Reifer returned to settle matters once and for all with three wickets in four balls over to end with remarkable figures of 5/20. Chris Green was caught at cover before Jason Mohammed holed out to deep point and a frustrated Rutherford gloved a slower ball through to Pooran.
Wahab completed the formalities, knocking back Sohail Tanvir’s off stump in the final over as the Amazon Warriors came up well short.