History was written once again during the 2023 Republic Bank CPL season for the Saint Lucia Kings. While the championship may have eluded us, our campaign was adorned with extraordinary individual performances that will be cherished forever.
Here's a vivid journey through these standout moments:
- Roston Chase vs Jamaica Tallawahs: Match 1 - 53(31) & 3/39
The opening match of the 2023 CPL couldn't have been more gripping. Roston Chase was the star of the show, contributing both with the bat and the ball. His all-round brilliance included a remarkable 53 runs and a superb spell, ending with figures of 3/39. It was his performance that restricted the Tallawahs to 187. Although our top order struggled in response, Chase's partnership with Roshon Primus took us close, but we narrowly lost by 11 runs.
- Faf du Plessis vs Trinbago Knight Riders: Match 5 - 57(36)
This match was destined to be special as it marked Faf du Plessis' final appearance before his elbow surgery. Facing the formidable Trinbago Knight Riders, Faf delivered magnificently, scoring a brisk 57 off 36 balls. We posted a respectable total of 167, and our bowlers defended it brilliantly, dismissing the Knight Riders for just 113.
- Khary Pierre vs Trinbago Knight Riders: Match 5 - 4/20
If Faf was the hero with the bat, it was Khary Pierre's wizardry with the ball that sealed the deal against the Knight Riders. His exceptional figures of 4/20 were among the best of the season. His crucial wickets, including those of Andre Russell and Martin Guptill, ensured our comfortable 54-run victory.
- Johnson Charles vs Barbados Royals: Match 6 - 78(52)
Stepping into the spotlight in Faf's absence, Johnson Charles didn't let us miss our captain. Opening alongside Colin Munro, he set the stage on fire with an explosive 78 off just 52 balls. This helped us set a formidable total of 195, and our bowlers did the rest, securing the win.
- Alzarri Joseph vs Barbados Royals: Match 6 - 3/7
While Johnson Charles shone with the bat, Alzarri Joseph dominated with the ball in the same match. His remarkable spell of 3/7 wreaked havoc among the Royals' lineup. This crucial contribution led us to a double over the Royals this season and propelled us to the top of the table.
- Colin Munro vs Trinbago Knight Riders: Match 8 - 72(51)
In a crucial match following a loss against the Patriots, Colin Munro, CPL's all-time leading run-scorer, provided the explosive start we needed. His unbeaten 72 off 51 balls propelled us to a total of 167. Unfortunately, the Knight Riders' batsmen were in fine form that day, and Munro's heroics weren't enough for us to secure the win.
- Bhanuka Rajapaksa vs Guyana Amazon Warriors: Match 9 - 86(49)
In the penultimate group-stage match, we needed a victory to secure a playoff spot against the unbeaten Guyana Amazon Warriors, who later became the 2023 CPL champions. After restricting them to 167/5, our chase began with the loss of Johnson Charles early. However, what followed was a spectacular partnership between Bhanuka Rajapaksa and Colin Munro, amassing 132 runs. This remarkable effort handed the Warriors their first defeat of the season.
- Matthew Forde vs Jamaica Tallawahs: Eliminator - 4/23
In the Eliminator match against the Jamaica Tallawahs, our batting performance fell short as we managed only 125 runs. The task of restraining the Tallawahs was formidable. Still, Matthew Forde's exceptional bowling performance, taking quick wickets, gave us hope. Unfortunately, the target was chased down, marking our exit from the tournament.
As we look back at these incredible performances, both fans and players draw inspiration. These moments serve as a powerful motivation to strive for even greater success in the upcoming campaign.