England bowlers dismantle West Indies in one-sided clash
The clash between England and West Indies was billed as a clash of the heavyweights, a rematch of the final of the last edition of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021.
Only one team progressed their claims of being favourites though, with England outclassing the West Indies batsmen in a show of total dominance, bowling them out for a measly 55.
Adil Rashid returned a brilliant 4/2 while Tymal Mills and Moeen Ali returned two wickets each in a near-complete bowling performance.
England chased the total down with utter ease, completing a seven-wicket victory.
Early wickets for England
The West Indies openers Evin Lewis and Lendl Simmons tried to blast away at the start – there was a meaty six from Lewis early on that gave the impression West Indies were in for a tall total.
However, Chris Woakes was on hand to provide the early breakthrough, and thereafter, there was never a point when it seemed West Indies would fight back. Woakes had Evin Lewis walking back in just the second over, the opener holing out after Moeen Ali took an excellent catch.
That triggered an implosion. Lendl Simmons looked to take on Moeen Ali and found the fielder in the deep, and unfortunately for West Indies, it was the sort of dismissal most of their batsmen were guilty of.
Only Chris Gayle managed a double-digit score – there were some excellent fours, cut away to the fence, as he raced away, even as wickets fell at the other end. However, Tymal Mills had his number – a short ball did for him – and West Indies never really recovered.
West Indies were 4/31 in the Powerplay. They lost the remaining six wickets for just 24 runs. Their batsmen struggled to build partnerships and attempted to bat their way out of trouble.
The ploy to promote the veteran Dwayne Bravo – he came in at No.5 – didn’t yield fruit as he was dismissed for just 5 by Jordan. Nicholas Pooran was caught behind, attempting a big drive through covers, and captain Pollard picked out long-on off Rashid.
It was Rashid’s second wicket, having already cleaned up the dangerous Andre Russell, and when he cleaned up the West Indies innings, dismissing both Obed McCoy and Ravi Rampaul.
West Indies fight
The West Indies bowlers did put up fight. Jason Roy was sent back for 11 in the fourth over, with Ravi Rampaul prompting the batsman to pop an easy catch to Chris Gayle.
There were wickets in each of the next three overs – Jonny Bairstow was caught behind off Akeal Hossein, Moeen Ali was run out for 3 and Liam Livingstone popped a return catch to Hosein. If West Indies had a better total, they’d have been in the game.
Buttler sees it out
Jos Buttler hung around, knowing he had all the time to bat himself in, to help see the chase through. He ended unbeaten on a 22-ball 24* and England completed the chase in just 8.2 overs.
They will have greater tests during the course of the tournament.
(Source and courtesy: https://www.t20worldcup.com/)