A record-breaking bowling spell from Mohammad Irfan proved in vain as St Kitts & Nevis Patriots chased down Barbados Tridents’ 147/6 to complete a six-wicket victory despite the big Pakistan fast bowler conceding just a single run from his four overs.
That solitary run was scampered by Brandon King from the final delivery of Irfan’s mesmerising four-over spell with the new ball. Despite narrowly missing out on a shutout, Irfan does now possess the most economical figures for a full four-over allocation in the history of all T20 cricket, beating the previous record of two runs conceded held by Chanaka Welegedara and Chris Morris.
Irfan also removed both Patriots openers caught behind, with Chris Gayle falling to the very first ball of the innings and Evin Lewis following in his next over.
After the first 42 balls of the innings brought only 18 runs, the next 30 brought an equally unbelievable 75 as the game was turned around completely. Steve Smith’s over was bludgeoned for 27 runs including four huge sixes which was a big moment in the game.
By the time Brandon King fell for 60 from 49 balls the required rate was below a run a ball, with Ben Cutting adding to his two earlier wickets with an unbeaten 29 to see his side home in the 19th over.
The Tridents’ own progress with the bat had twice been halted by losing two wickets. First Anton Devcich threw down the non-striker’s stumps with Martin Guptill (19) stranded after a mix-up with Dwayne Smith, but better yet was to come next.
Smith looked to clear the boundary with a mighty heave into the legside, but the ball held up in the wind and was caught one-handed high above his head by Lewis, who had to keep his balance to stay inside the rope.
Devcich struck twice as he broke a fine partnership of 87 between Shai Hope and Tridents captain Jason Holder, who smashed 54 in 35 balls to provide much-needed impetus to the innings.
Guptill and Dwayne Smith had been watchful in the Power Play, and Barbados had only 54/2 to show for their efforts at the halfway stage. Hope (26 from 24) and particularly Holder stepped on the accelerator as 39 runs came from the next three overs.