Jonny Bairstow guided England to comfortable win    Getty Images
Jonny Bairstow guided England to comfortable win Getty Images

Anderson in the house: After scalping 19 wickets in the three Test series versus West Indies, James Anderson was available in Old Trafford as well. Nonetheless, he wasn’t here to cause more damage to visitors’ line-up with the ball. He had a different role to fulfil. Along with former England all-rounder David Lloyd, Anderson presented the pitch report. Looks like the 35-year-old is already gearing up for the commentators’ role post retirement.

James Anderson (L) and David Lloyd presented the pitch report    Getty Images
James Anderson (L) and David Lloyd presented the pitch report Getty Images

Teaser of Gayle-storm? Chris Gayle scored a blistering 21-ball 40 in the one-off T20I. He was up for the challenge in his first ODI post World Cup 2015. The left-hander started on a positive note, smashing 2 fours and 3 sixes. He was given a reprieve in the first over; Joe Root dropped him at slips. It looked like he was going to make England pay with his power-hitting and timing. However, Gayle went for a glory shot off Chris Woakes, and was plucked brilliantly by Root at deep. In this way, the English Test skipper made up for his past folly and brought England on top.

Stokes-Samuels rivalry: Ben Stokes and Marlon Samuels’ rivalry is well known. It started from the Test series in Caribbean in 2015 and garnered more eyeballs during the epic World T20I final in 2016 at Eden Gardens, India. Spectators were on their toes when Stokes was introduced into the attack with Samuels at the opposite end. The Englishman had the last laugh by dismissing the right-hander for 17. Samuels tried to flick, got a thick edge and was cleanly taken by wicketkeeper, Jos Buttler.

Holder’s cameo: Had it not been Jason Holder’s 43 not out, West Indies would have folded for less than 200. Ever since Gayle departed, England applied the brakes on West Indies’ scoring. Shai Hope, Rovman Powell, Jason Mohammad and Samuels got starts but failed to get going. Adil Rashid and Stokes’ 3-for maintained pressure. The duo were ably supported by others as well. Holder’s 33-ball 41 included five strokes to the fence, thereby setting a below par 205 for victory.

Jonny boy‘s maiden century: England backed Bairstow as opener along with Alex Hales. While Hales departed after a brisk start, Biarstow made full use of the opportunity. He has been thriving for a long rope in ODIs and T20Is, and got the chance owing to Jason Roy’s failures. The right-hander did not falter in a modest chase.

Bairstow took his time, ran hard between wickets and ensured to put the bad balls to the fence. He was involved in a 125-run stand with Joe Root (54). The duo looked effortless and did nothing silly. It was all about timing, rotating the strike and putting a price on their scalps. The two busy customers put the final nail in the coffin for West Indies.

Though Root and Morgan fell in quick succession, England sailed past West Indies by 7 wickets courtesy Bairstow’s maiden ODI ton. His innings included 11 fours (strike rate of 103.09).