Hosts Trinbago Knight Riders may have the home advantage, but that will be a recurring feature this season at the Hero Caribbean Premier League, as all matches are to be played in Trinidad.
So, the other teams would already have got used to it mentally. For the first five matchdays, both games are scheduled to be held at the Brian Lara Academy in Trinidad.
The action starts at 7:30 pm today with the Knight Riders taking on Amazon Warriors at 7:30 pm (IST).
Knight Riders v Amazon Warriors
TKR have some of the biggest names of the Hero CPL and they included a starcast of skipper Kieron Pollard, Dwayne Bravo, Sunil Narine and Colin Munro. Pollard is one of the biggest hitters in the game and the others have great T20 experience.
Narine has been a match-winner in the past but has not seen action since last October, when he had a finger injury – he played despite that in the closing stages of Hero CPL 2019. He also missed the Tour of the sub-continent. But in spin-friendly conditions in Trinidad he could be a handful for most oppositions.
Some of the other key players include Fawad Ahmed, Lendl Simmons, Khary Pierre, Tim Seifert and Sikandar Raza. And, then there is the lone Indian in the tournament – the 48-year-old leggie Pravin Tambe.
Guyana Amazon Warriors, runners-up last season, had a brilliant league record of 10-on-10 last year but lost to Barbados Tridents in the final. Their star player was Brandon King who totalled 496 runs from 12 matches and was the top scorer and it included a best of unbeaten 132. Since then King has found a place in the West indies national team, too.
Warriors has a very exciting prospect in 23-year-old Shimron Hetmeyer, who actually pulled out of the Tour of England due to Covid concerns. In IPL 2019 he played for Royal Challengers, though not as often as he would have liked to. He could be the man to tackle the spinning tracks of Trinidad.
Warriors also have a match-winning bowler, Imran Tahir, the highest wicket-taker last year with 16 victims in nine matches.
Teams: Trinbago Knight Riders: Dwayne Bravo (Capt), Kieron Pollard, Sunil Narine, Colin Munro, Fawad Ahmed, Darren Bravo, Lendl Simmons, Khary Pierre, Tim Seifert, Sikandar Raza, Anderson Phillip, Pravin Tambe, Jayden Seales, Amir Jangoo, Tion Webster, Akeal Hosein, Muhammad Ali Khan.
Guyana Amazon Warriors: Chris Green (Capt), Imran Tahir, Nicholas Pooran, Brandon King, Ross Taylor, Shimron Hetmyer, Keemo Paul, Sherfane Rutherford, Romario Shepherd, Naveen-ul-Haq, Chandrapul Hemraj, Kevin Sinclair, Ashmeade Nedd, Odean Smith, Anthony Bramble, Jasdeeo Singh, Kissoondath Magram.
Head-to-head: Matches played: 19. Won by Knight Riders: 10; Won by Warriors: 9.
Tridents v SKN Patriots (Tuesday, 3 am IST)
Defending champions Barbados Tridents, led by Chris Green, will have the services of star players like Rashid Khan, Jason Holder and Corey Anderson, besides Johnson Charles, the top scorer for Tridents last season with 415 runs from 13 matches.
With Anderson and Shai Hope, he will be the mainstay of the batting, though they have excellent all-rounders in Jason Holder, Mitchell Santner and teenaged star Nyeem Young. The bowling star could be Afghanistan’s spinning star Rashid Khan.
For SKN Patriots, Evin Lewis, Chris Lynn and Ben Dunk will spearhead the batting department with the bowling sting coming from Sheldon Cottrell, Alzarri Joseph, Sohail Tanvir and Ish Sodhi. A young star in the making is wicketkeeper-batsman Joshua De Silva.
St Kitts and Nevis Patriots: Rayad Emrit (Capt), Chris Lynn, Ben Dunk, Evin Lewis, Nick Kelly, Sohail Tanvir, Ish Sodhi, Sheldon Cottrell, Denesh Ramdin, Imran Khan, Alzarri Joseph, Joshua De Silva, Dominic Drakes, Colin Archibald, Jon Russ Jaggesar, Jahmar Hamilton.
Barbados Tridents: Jason Holder (Capt), Rashid Khan, Corey Anderson, Shamarh Brooks, Mitchell Santner, Johnson Charles, Shai Hope, Hayden Walsh Jr, Ashley Nurse, Jonathan Carter, Raymon Reifer, Kyle Mayers, Joshua Bishop, Nyeem Young, Justin Greaves, Keon Harding, Shayan Jahangir.
Head-to-head: Matches played: 10. Won by SKN Patriots: 7; Won by Tridents: 3.
Fans can catch all the action LIVE on Star Sports 1, Star Sports 1 HD, Star Sports 1 Hindi, and Star Sports 1 Hindi HD.
The action will also be streamed LIVE on FanCode, the multisport aggregating platform from Dream Sports.