The Caribbean Premier League 2019 Draft took place today (Wednesday, May 22) at the Gfinity Esports Arena in London, as the tournament’s six teams put their wheels in motion ahead of the seventh edition of the competition.
Dwayne Bravo’s Trinbago Knight Riders emerged victorious last year and have already recruited Kieron Pollard away from the Saint Lucia Stars as their marquee player for the coming season.
The hapless Stars, meanwhile, were yet to name a marquee player up to the Draft. They did, however, pick up iconic Sri Lankan bowler Lasith Malinga, for the second time. The Stars drafted Malinga in 2017 but he was unable to fulfil his contract.
“Slinger” Malinga has 87 wickets for Sri Lanka in 73 T20 Internationals. In the Indian Premier League, he played a key role in Mumbai Indians’ title win earlier this month and is one of the greatest bowlers in league history with 173 wickets in 122 games.
Australia’s Fawad Ahmed will join Malinga in Saint Lucia. Ahmed was the top wicket-taker for the Trinbago Knight Riders last year as they lifted the title. Meanwhile, Sri Lankan all-rounder Thisara Perera rejoins Team Saint Lucia, having played for them in 2016, when they were the Zouks.
The Saint Lucia franchise has also announced the retention of former West Indies captain — and former Stars captain — Daren Sammy, along with former West Indies opening batsman, Andre Fletcher.
Sammy and Fletcher, a Grenadian, will be joined by fellow Windward Islands players, Obed McCoy and Kesrick Williams, as players retained by the Stars, who also returned big Antiguan all-rounder Rahkeem Cornwall.
Meanwhile, former West Indies opening batsman Johnson Charles, one of five Saint Lucians in the Draft, was snatched up by the Barbados Tridents in Round 6.
One round later, the Stars added Jamaican opener, John Campbell. Yet another Sri Lankan, wicketkeeper/batsman, Niroshan Dickwella, will join the Stars as well.