England fightback to restrict West Indies after Chris Gayle blitzkrieg

Chris Gayle smashed a 51-ball 53 which included five sixes and three boundaries against England Getty Images

London: Jun 19, 2012

Dwayne Bravo rescued West Indies from a collapse after Chris Gayle blitzkrieg in the second ODI against England at The Oval on Tuesday.

West Indies were four for 79, when Bravo was joined by Kieron Pollard (41).

However, with England giving Bravo and Pollard a reprieve apiece, the pair shared a fifth-wicket stand of exactly 100 as the West Indies made 238 for nine.

Earlier, opener Gayle made 53 in just 51 balls with five sixes and three fours before he fell LBW to off-spinner Graeme Swann.

Gayle, arguably the world’s best one-day opener, had not played an international match for 15 months following a dispute with the West Indies Cricket Board

But having missed the Southampton clash with a shin injury it was not long before the 32-year-old left-hander — in for the injured Darren Bravo — resumed normal service after England captain Alastair Cook won the toss and fielded.

The onslaught started when Gayle struck three fours off successive deliveries from fast bowler Steven Finn.

First change Tim Bresnan’s opening over was slammed for 18 as Gayle hit three sixes culminating with a huge blow.

But Gayle was out when he pushed tentatively at Swann and New Zealand umpire Tony Hill, after long consideration, raised his finger in response to the spinner’s vehement LBW appeal.

Gayle immediately reviewed the decision and while replays indicated an inside edge, there was no clear evidence as to whether the ball had hit his bat, rather than the pad, first and Hill’s verdict was upheld.

Soon afterwards, 63 for one became 63 for two when Dwayne Smith was caught behind off Stuart Broad.

And two wickets fell on 79, with opener Lendl Simmons — who faced 50 balls for a mere 12 runs — run out by Cook’s direct hit before Marlon Samuels mistimed a pull off Broad to Bresnan.

Bravo had made 18 when he chipped Swann only for Eoin Morgan, running in from long-off, to drop the difficult chance.

Worse followed when Swann lured Pollard down the pitch only for wicket-keeper Craig Kieswetter to fumble and miss a stumping chance.

Bravo, having made his second best score in 124 one-day internationals behind his 112 not out against England at Ahmedabad in 2006, skyed a catch to Ravi Bopara at extra-cover off seamer James Anderson.

Bravo faced 82 balls with two sixes and eight fours. Anderson took an economical two for 38 in his 10 overs.

Before play started a minute’s silence was held in memory of Surrey batsman Tom Maynard who died aged 23 on Monday. England players wore black armbands as a mark of respect and flags above the pavilion were flown at half-mast.(AFP)

Brief Scores: West Indies 238 for 8 in 50 overs (Dwayne Bravo 77, Chris Gayle 53; James Anderson 2 for 38, Chris Broad 2 for 43) vs England

Full Scorecard