Former Windies U-19 captain Shimron Hetmyer announced himself on the Caribbean Premier League (CPL) stage with a brilliant half-century, which anchored the Guyana Amazon Warrior in a six-wicket win over St Kitts and Nevis Patriots at Providence Stadium on Thursday.
The 21-year-old player, who has been in a rich vein of form in the other two formats of the game, had little issue with transplanting the purple patch to T20 cricket. Hetmyer blasted a solid 79 from 45 as the Warriors easily chased down the 146 for 5 total put together by the Patriots.
The St Kitts-based team’s effort was anchored by T20 star Chris Gayle who smashed 86 from 65 an innings that included five sixes and seven fours. The big West Indian was, however, alone in keeping the scoreboard ticking over as only Tom Cooper and Australian Tom Cutting contributed anything else of significance after scoring 15 each.
In response, the Patriots struck early as openers Luke Ronchi and Chadwick Walton were dismissed in the first two overs to leave the home team struggling at 2 for 9. Next in to bat, however, the Patriots found Hetmyer impossible to subdue as he smashed 4 sixes and 9 boundaries.
Shoaib Malik was removed by Patriots pacer Sheldon Contrel for 14 and Jason Cooper was caught off the bowling of Sandeep Lamichhane (16) but Australian Chris Green struck a responsible 25 from 23 to lead the team home alongside Hetmyer. Contrell and Lamichhane each took two wickets for the Warriors.