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Rahkeem Cornwall is a much talked about cricketer on the World stage largely due to his unconventional appearance. He’s a huge man in every sense standing at 6 feet 8 inches tall, and weighing over 22 stones. It’s because of this at times his talent as a cricketer is somewhat overlooked. His brilliant innings on Sunday evening in Barbados very much put his ability at the forefront of every onlookers mind as Barbados Royals defeated St Kitts and Nevis Patriots in the Caribbean Premier League.

The Patriots Bat First

The Patriots had first use of the conditions on an excellent batting surface and started the match in imposing fashion. Andre Fletcher and Will Smeed added 115 for the first wicket in just 11.2 overs before both were removed by the off spin of Cornwall. Fletcher scored 56 from 37 deliveries, Smeed 65 from 36. The main fireworks came from skipper Sherfane Rutherford though who smashed 65 not out from 27 balls hitting five fours and five sixes. At the halfway stage they would have been happy enough with a total of 220 for 4. 

Cornwall Begins Firing

Cornwall however signalled his intentions from the first delivery he faced from George Linde smashing him over the extra cover boundary for six. The West indies national cricket team star combined shear force with some beautiful timing in an innings that sent the home crowd into raptures. Kyle Mayers and Laurie Evans provided some early support both scoring quickfire 20’s but the Patriots had no answer to the big man’s brutal onslaught.

They did miss an opportunity to dismiss him on 45, with the captain Rutherford dropping a difficult chance at long on parrying the ball over the rope for another six. Rovman Powell joined Cornwall at the crease playing some impressive strokes himself as he made an unbeaten 49 from 26 deliveries. Barbados skipper Powell would later describe Cornwall’s innings as “remarkable” and “a fantastic knock, one of the best I have ever seen”. 

Cornwall Nears A Century

Cornwall started the 15th over on 93, and began it by powering Benny Howell back over his head for his 12th six, he calmly knocked the next ball into the legside for a single to complete a remarkable century. His ‘bat drop’ celebration cemented further his cult hero status and reignited calls for him to be included in the West Indies limited overs team having only previously featured in Tests. You can understand to some degree the reluctance to include him in shorter formats with a great emphasis on athleticism in the field and fine margins at the highest level but when you see someone perform to this level it’s important to recognise what someone can add to a team as well. Especially in a period where the West Indies are hardly awash with World class talent having failed to qualify for the upcoming 50 over Men’s Cricket World Cup in India.

He retired hurt shortly after for a magnificent 102 in just 48 balls as the team finished the job winning the game with eleven balls and 8 wickets to spare.

Final Result

Barbados Royals 223 for 2 (Cornwall 102 not out, Powell 49 not out) beat St Kitts and Nevis Patriots 220 for 4 (Rutherford 65 not out, Smeed 63, Fletcher 56, Cornwall 2 for 27) by 8 wickets.