Moeen Ali scored 102 off 57 balls    Getty Images
Moeen Ali scored 102 off 57 balls Getty Images

After Joe Root and Ben Stokes half-centuries, Moeen Ali s destructive batting guided England to a decent total of 369 for 9 in the third ODI against West Indies. At the County Ground on Sunday, the visitors won the toss and Jason Holder put England to bat.

England, however, were staring down the barrel at 74 for 3. It was the duo of Root and Stokes who lifted England to 206 for 4. Further making things worse for West Indies, Moeen Ali went all guns blazing and powered England past 300.

England came with an attacking game plan, yet again sending Bairstow to open the innings. The batsman, in his brief stay of 17 deliveries, hit a six and a four before getting caught and bowled by skipper Holder. Root then paired up with Hales and took the team score past seventy. Before Hales could get to his half-century, he was removed by Miguel Cummins. At this point, England lost successive wickets as skipper Eoin Morgan was dismissed in the very next over, for a golden duck. Holder managed to confuse his England counterpart to produce an edge, reducing the opponents to 74 for 3.

Root and Stokes took charge from there on. None of them looked a tad bit nervous due to the fall of wickets and smoothly took their team past 100 and then 150, scoring half-centuries in the process. West Indies bowlers failed to find the right areas to bowl at, which in turn benefitted the hosts. They went past 200 as well.

It was Rovman Powell who broke the dangerous partnership, sending Stokes back for 73. There was not enough power as he hit the full, wide delivery straight to deep point. Soon after, Cummins got rid of Root (84), trapping him in front.

Just when West Indies thought their problems had ended, Moeen Ali came out to bat. Moeen was in the mode to destruct all that comes in his way. He hardly took time to push the accelerate button and started hitting the West Indies bowlers all around the park. While the score looked to be around 300 after Stokes and Root’s departure, Mooen’s 57 ball 100 took it past 350 before he got out to Ashley Nurse in attempt to hit a six. He had already hit 8 of them on his way to century with 7 fours. Moeen’s was the second-fastest century (off 53 balls) by any Englishman after Jos Buttler’s. England’s innings ended with a pair of fours hit by Adil Rashid, with 369 for 9 on the board after 50 overs.

Miguel Cummins was West Indies’ pick of the bowlers with 3 for 82 followed by Jason Holder who had the second best figures (2 for 81).

Brief scores:

England 369 for 9 in 50 overs (Joe Root 84, Ben Stokes 73, Moeen Ali 102; Jason Holder 2 for 81, Miguel Cummins 3 for 82) against West Indies.