Wednesday, February 21, 2018

WI whip Aussies in T20I


CHARLES ATTACKS: West Indies opener Johnson Charles, during his knock of 57 in yesterday's Twenty20 International against Australia, at the Gabba cricket ground in Brisbane, Australia. West Indies won by 27 runs. —Photo: AFP

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West Indies proved why they are world T20 champions with a 27-run win over Australia in a one-off fixture, yesterday, to ease the pain inflicted by a whitewash in the just concluded five-match ODI series.

A brisk half century from opener Johnson Charles set the tone for an imposing 191 while Kieron Pollard snapped up frontline wickets as the Australian run chase screeched to a halt at the Gabba.

The victory was West Indies' first over Australia, in Australia, in any format for 16 years since the Perth Test in February 1997.

Shaun Marsh and Adam Voges put on 74 to bring the Aussies' run chase back on course after Darren Sammy removed opener Aaron Finch for four.

However, when both men--Marsh 19 and Voges 51--were run-out, Australia lost valuable momentum. Pollard got rid of Brad Haddin and the debutant Ben Rohrer, the last remaining specialist batsman, as the home side slipped closer to defeat.

Australia found themselves needing 51 from three overs with only the bowlers at the crease struggling to score off Sunil Narine, Pollard and Tino Best. Narine collected two for 19 from his four overs, and was the key man with the ball for West Indies since none of Australia's batsmen seemed comfortable against him.

However, Pollard, who set up the victory with his 26 runs and three wickets for 30 runs, was named man of the match as the Australians crawled to 164 for eight.

Earlier, while Chris Gayle was caught for eight after a miscued pull, his opening partner Charles took charge to top score with a busy knock off 57 in which he turned the ball behind square regularly to keep the runs ticking over.

Charles, who scored a century in the final ODI Sunday, struck seven fours and one six, a whip over midwicket off Nathan Coulter-Nile.

He shared in an important 88-run partnership with Darren Bravo. The less adventurous Bravo scored 32 from 27 balls before he was the victim of a terrible mix-up with Kieron Pollard when both men found themselves at the same end.

Pollard managed two fours and one six before he was caught at long-on off Faulkner for a quickfire 26.

Andre Russell hit a late 23 from 11 balls to push the total into extremely worrying territory for the Aussies.

Faulkner was the best Australian bowler on show, collecting three for 28 from his four overs. However, he was on the receiving end of a couple of monstrous Sammy sixes in the 19th over. The Windies skipper raced to 20 in just seven balls.