Fast bowler Sheldon Cottrell has backed the St Kitts and Nevis Patriots to at least reach the semi-finals of the 2020 Caribbean Premier League.
The Patriots were not part of the first two editions of the CPL in 2013 and 2014. They finished in last position in 2015 and 2016.
In 2017, the Patriots lost the final to the Trinbago Knight Riders. The St Kitts team ended third and fourth, respectively, in 2018 and 2019.
This year, they have Australian batsman Chris Lynn and New Zealand leg-spinner Ish Sodhi in the squad. West Indies fast bowler Alzarri Joseph is also available.
“It's a well-rounded team. I'll be realistic: we're pushing for the top four and will take it from there, but we have a strong team with the inclusion of Lynn and Sodhi,” Cottrell told ESPNcricinfo.
“Alzarri too, he's a cool customer. There's nothing too hype about him, but he's gone from strength to strength. With what he's been through in his personal life, I feel for him, and I can see that he's a strong person. He'll be trying to put his hand up.”
Cottrell in the IPL
This year's CPL and Indian Premier League will be played without spectators. The fixtures will happen behind closed doors as a preventative measure against the coronavirus. Cottrell will join the Kings XI Punjab in the IPL after the CPL.
“How am I going to feel? Playing without spectators is something new for most international cricketers, but I'm the type of person that'll put in 110% no matter what, so I'm not too worried about that,” he added.
“I'm the type of person who creates his own energy. Most times, the fans don't matter to me on the field, because I'm so focussed and zoned in on my job and what I have to do.”
Cottrell will be accompanied by West Indies batsman Chris Gayle, Australian all-rounder Glenn Maxwell, New Zealand all-rounder James Neesham and other international stars in the Kings XI Punjab squad. The franchise has never won the IPL.
The Mumbai Indians are the reigning champions, after beating the Chennai Super Kings in the 2019 final. Mumbai have four titles – the most in the history of the IPL.