Darren Sammy’s (above) explosive 61 helped West Indies to 269 © Getty Images (File Photo)
North Sound: Feb 28, 2014
Feb 28, 2014
West Indies captain Dwayne Bravo lead a brilliant fight back after England seized the initiative earlier in the innings. Bravo was amply supported by a well-crafted half-century by Lendl Simmons and a late assault by Darren Sammy to propel West Indies to 269 for six.
With both teams desperately needing a winning run after disastrous run of results, England were the first to take the initiative through the sluggish with four quick wickets that rocked the West Indies top order. However, West Indies showed character, fight and some explosive batting by Darren Sammy in the latter overs that lifted West Indies to a respectable total.
Earlier in the innings, Stuart Broad raised a few eyebrows by opening the bowling with Joe Root. The move paid off immediately with Root drawing first blood and James Treadwell’s miserly spell.
Labouring at 153 for five in the 40th over as the tourists’ trio of slow bowlers exploited helpful conditions, Sammy changed the tenor of the match completely upon his arrival.
He smashed 61 off just 36 deliveries with five fours and four sixes as England captain Stuart Broad paid a heavy price for returning to his fast-medium bowlers in the final stages of an innings that was decidedly pedestrian though the first 35 overs.
Bravo played the captain’s role superbly with his unbeaten 87 (91 balls, 8 fours, 1 six), at times matching the rampaging former skipper shot-for-shot during at 116-run sixth-wicket partnership that lifted Caribbean spirits on and off the field.
By the time Sammy fell to the final ball of the innings, 85 runs had been plundered off the last five overs.
Tim Bresnan claimed that final wicket but he, together with Barbadian-born Chris Jordan, suffered the most at the hands of the rampaging pair, conceding 135 runs in a combined 19 overs.
This contrasted sharply with the returns of the off-spinners, Joe Root, James Tredwell and debutant Moeen Ali, who suffocated the West Indies top-order to the extent that they were struggling at 45 for four in the 16th over when Bravo joined Lendl Simmons.
Playing positively, but still carefully, the pair put on 108 for the fifth wicket before Simmons, who finally ended his run of low scores against England dating back some five years in getting to a workmanlike 65, perished to a catch at cover attempting a lofted drive off Bresnan.
His demise ushered in the former skipper Sammy, whose ultra-aggressive approach saw England wilting in the midday heat.
West Indies 269 for 6 in 50 overs (Lendl Simmons 65, Dwayne Bravo 87*, Darren Sammy 61; Tim Bresnan 3 for 68) vs England.