West Indies trump England by four wickets in series opener

11 windies 2
West Indies celebrate the fall of another England wicket at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium. (Photo by Johnny Jno Baptiste)
- Advertisement -

By Samuel Peters

Captain Shai Hope scored his 16th ton to lead his side to a win in the first match of the three-match ODI series between England and the West Indies at the Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Stadium(SVRCS) today.

The toss was won by England who opted to bat, getting off to a blistering start as the bowlers failed to contain the new opening pair of Phil Salt and Will Jacks, who put on 77 without loss inside of nine overs.

The pick of the Windies bowlers, Gudakesh Motie provided the breakthrough as he removed the impressive Salt for 48, but the runs flowed continually.

Harry Brook top scored with 71 while Zak Crawley made 48 and the lower order pair of Brydon Carse (31) and Sam Curran (38) provided the impetus to help the English side set the home team 325 to win.

Motie had figures of two for 49, Oshane Thomas two for 57 and Romario Shepherd had two for 77 at the end of the innings.

At their turn at the crease, Windies got off to a solid and remarkable start with the ever promising Dominican opener, Alick Athanaze, blazing the loose bowling of the English bowlers. While he attacked in frolicking fashion, Brandon King brought calmness holding up the other end to the delight of the crowd. The pair put on 104 in 18 overs, still behind the required run rate needed.

Teenage leg spinner, Rehan Ahmed, had an excellent outing in his first ODI match in the Caribbean, removing Athanaze for a well played 66. Then King followed in the next over to Liam Livingstone to leave the West Indies teetering for the next ten overs.

Then there was the arrival of Keacy Carty and Shai Hope. Carty struggled to rotate the strike and eventually was dismissed for 16 from some 39 balls as his recent dip in form continues.

However, Skipper Hope continued to rotate the strike playing a counter attacking innings. Shimron Hetmeyer came to the crease and provided a resurgence in the run flow, but fell for the score of 30.   

Shurfane Rutherford began his ODI career walloping a six off his first ball to the amazement of the Antiguan crowd. He was removed two balls later to the spin and guile of Ahmed who ended with figures of two for 40 from his allotted overs.

Windies were 213 for 5 needing another 113 runs with less than 12 overs, when the broad shouldered bustling figure of Romario Shepherd walked out. He wasted no time powering sixes and fours to significantly reduce the required runs before he was dismissed for a fantastic 48 which included four fours and three sixes with the score at 302 for 6.

It meant that the only recognised batter left, Hope, had to take command of the rest of the match to secure the win, and that’s what he did as he lambasted three towering sixes to first bring up his 16th ODI century and to secure the win for the West Indies.

He ended on an unbeaten 109 from 83 balls while Sam Curran became the most expensive English bowler in an ODI match conceding 98 runs from 9.5 overs.

The next match will be played on Wednesday at 9:30 at the SVRCS.

- Advertisement -