Trinbago Knight Riders will launch the defence of their Caribbean Premier League title before their home crowd at the Queen’s Park Oval in just over two weeks time, and team director Venky Mysore believes this will set the tone for their campaign.
Last year, the local franchise— then known as Trinidad and Tobago Red Steel—trounced defending champions Barbados Tridents by 20 runs in the final at Queen’s Park Oval here to claim their first-ever CPL crown. Mysore said the venue, along with the home fans, would make the opening leg here memorable.
“It feels extra special to start our defence of the title at our home ground,” he said.
“The passion of T&T fans is unmatchable and I am sure that the team will enjoy the support and perform to their best in front of their home crowd.”
Knight Riders will open their campaign against the Darren Sammy-led St Lucia Zouks on the opening day of the tournament on June 29, and follow up with a repeat of last year’s final on July 1.
The following day, they do battle with Guyana Amazon Warriors before wrapping up against 2013 champions Jamaica Tallawahs on July 4.
This year, Knight Riders will feature champion off-spinner Sunil Narine who has crossed over from Amazon Warriors after three years there, and he will be joined by New Zealand batting star Brendon McCullum, South Africa’s Hashim Amla and Pakistani Umar Akmal.
And along with the likes of West Indies all-rounder Dwayne Bravo and left-arm spinner Sulieman Benn, TKR owner Shah Rukh Khan believes the franchise will be serious title contenders again.
“We have assembled some of the best players from the West Indies and across the world this year and I know our players are raring to step out on to the field and represent T&T with pride,” he said.
“I know we can count on the full support of the Trinbago fans to cheer TKR as we commence the defence of our title.”
The CPL runs until August 7.