New South Wales meet familiar rivals
Match factsNew South Wales v Trinidad & Tobago, September 28
Start time 1600 (1030 GMT)
These two teams have a history. They met twice in the inaugural Champions League Twenty20, splitting two exciting games. Kieron Pollard first announced himself with an unbeaten, blistering 54 off 18 balls in Hyderabad that won Trinidad and Tobago the match and him a bumper IPL contract with Mumbai Indians. In the other game, the final, Brett Lee played a decisive cameo, grabbed two wickets and caught Pollard, who had begun to look threatening, in the deep to seal the title for New South Wales. Both those matchwinners, however, will be absent from tomorrow's encounter due to their commitments with their IPL franchises but in a tournament that has provided much entertainment thus far, we can expect the teams to deliver another close one.
T&T, despite the absence of Pollard, have won plenty of respect. They've earned their place in the main leg by coming through the qualifiers and gave the high profile Mumbai Indians a serious scare. In a chase where fortunes fluctuated wildly, Mumbai just about held their nerve in the final over to win off the final ball, but T&T had no business keeping the game so close after being bowled out for 98. While they bowled determinedly, their batsmen didn't press on after getting starts. Likewise with NSW, who were soundly beaten by Cape Cobras in their first game. Nor could NSW's bowlers make much of a fight in the wake of an onslaught from the Cobras openers. With little margin for a slip-up, the team will aim for a quick climb from the bottom of the points table.
Watch out for …Daren Ganga is a man of strong words and an impressive captain. In fact, Ian Chappell thought he should lead West Indies after the way they performed in this tournament's inaugural edition. But, of late, Ganga's own form with the bat has been poor. He had a good first-class season in the Caribbean but in his last six Twenty20 innings he has scores of 0, 7, 1, 17 and 5.
Steven Smith is a player of immense value in the shorter versions, especially Twenty20, with his all-round ability. He was left out of Australia's Test series in Sri Lanka which would have been a setback, given his spirited batting, outstanding fielding and leg-spin are known to have the makings of a regular in the national side.
Team newsT&T underperformed big time with the bat, several of their players had an off day but it was an especially bad one for Denesh Ramdin. The former West Indies vice-captain is back in the national reckoning - he's been picked for the Bangladesh tour and is a senior member of the T&T side - but will feel a bit of pressure after his duck and that missed run-out in the previous game. William Perkins is an attacking opener and a wicketkeeping option. T&T may not make any changes but their batsmen need to recover, and quickly.
NSW went in with three spinners in their previous game, though Steve O'Keefe didn't do much. If at all, they might make a change in their attack depending on the conditions.
Stats and trivia
- Kieron Pollard has struck the most sixes for T&T in Twenty20 matches, but next in line is opener Lendl Simmons with 22. The most fours, however, have been struck by William Perkins - 60.
- David Warner is the highest run-getter for NSW in Twenty20 cricket - 924 in 30 matches. The next best is 397 runs behind, but he has played 17 games less at a better average - Phil Hughes.
Quotes"We have capable batsmen who can come up tomorrow and mean business. We are coming up against a different attack on a different surface. Hopefully when the opportunity presents itself, our batters can come up trumps."
Denesh Ramdin is determined to fight back.
Siddhartha Talya is a sub editor at ESPNcricinfo