CPL experience was great, says Hemraj

Chandrapaul Hemraj, batting for the first time in the CPL, scored 37 against the Barbados Tridents on Sunday last.

– As St Lucia Stars eliminated from 2018 season

DESPITE being one of the strongest contenders at the start of the Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) this season, it has been yet another disappointing CPL season for the St Lucia Stars who  struggled right through the tournament with just seven points from their preliminary fixtures.

On paper, the Stars had a star-studded field with the likes of  David Warner, Lendl Simmons, Kieron Pollard, Andre Fletcher, Mitchell McClenaghan and Oais Ahman, among a few other top T20 players, but their performances were very poor, and should be a concern to the organisers for next season.

Pollard recorded a century, the second of the tournament so far, and he is second on the run-scoring charts with 330 from his ten innings. Fletcher with 257 runs, Warner 262, including 72 not out; Lendl Simmons (180), and Rakheem Cornwall (131) are the only other St Lucia Stars batsmen to pass 100 runs, which has been their major concern throughout the season.

Their bowling department, led by McClenaghan, was much more effective. They ended their campaign on a winning note, beating the Barbados Tridents by six wickets on Sunday last with Guyanese Chandrapaul Hemraj, batting for the first time in the CPL, hitting 37.

The innings was just a glimpse of his class and potential, and despite his limited appearances in the tournament in which the 25-year-old played in only two games, the experience was countless.

“It was a great experience playing my first CPL, even though we didn’t qualify. I was privileged to play with this franchise. It was a great feeling to share a dressing room with some of the most experience t20 players. Even though I haven’t played as much games as I wanted, I have gained a lot going forward,” Hemraj said.

Hemraj further mentioned that the familiarity gained will definitely help him to realise the ultimate goal of his cricketing ambition which is to play Test cricket for the West Indies.

Meanwhile, four teams have sealed their spots in the playoffs which begin on September 11 at the Guyana National Stadium, Providence.

They are the Trinbago Knight Riders, the Guyana Amazon Warriors, the Jamaica Tallawahs (all with 10 points each) and the St Kitts Patriots with nine points.

The Barbados Tridents, currently on four points with two games remaining, cannot advance even if they win their remaining games.