England Seal Series With Thumping 58-Run Win
England 328-7 (Prior 87, Shah 75, Strauss 52, Taylor 3-59) beat
West Indies 270 (Chanderpaul 68, Ramdin 45, Anderson 3-58) by 58 runs
Third One Day International, Edgbaston, Birmingham
England sealed a 2-0 One Day International series win over the West Indies with a thumping 58-run win in the final game at Edgbaston.
Matthew Prior and Owais Shah shared a 149-run stand in 122 balls for the third wicket to propel England to a score of 328 for seven before the West Indies never got going in reply, bowled out for 270 as Stuart Broad and James Anderson shared five wickets.
West Indian captain Chris Gayle must have been regretting his decision to ask England to bat even before Shah and Prior came to the crease as Ravi Bopara (49) and Andrew Strauss (52) added 81 in 15 overs, taking full advantage of the West Indian bowlers banging the ball in too short.
Ravi Rampaul bowled four overs for 29 runs with the new ball and was not invited to improve on those figures. After Strauss was dropped by Keiron Pollard off Fidel Edwards the West Indies' luck finally turned when Bopara was bowled via an inside edge, Dwayne Bravo the man picking up the wicket.
Strauss reached his 16th half-century but went little further, overbalancing as he missed an attempted drive against Sulieman Benn and failing to get his foot back behind the crease when the bails were whipped off by an ever-alert Denesh Ramdin.
That set the stage for Prior and Shah to run the West Indian ragged. Prior scored just five boundaries in his run-a-ball 87, taking the fight to his opponents with clever deflections and superb running between the wickets.
Shah was the more aggressive of the pair, thumping two big sixes and four fours with some of his punch drives of especially high quality, both the power generated and the precision placement impressing.
One ball after he had lofted a Jerome Taylor free hit into the stands he was caught by Runako Morton attempting a repeat and his dismissal, for 75, was swiftly followed by those of Prior and Dimitri Mascarenhas, who chipped a return catch to Pollard for a golden duck.
Paul Collingwood, man of the match at Bristol, where England went 1-0 up, ensured that there was no loss of momentum, steering them past the 300 mark before he was bowled by Taylor (3-59) for 23 in 14 balls.
Tim Bresnan (9) also perished in the hunt for quick runs, leaving Eoin Morgan (6) and Broad (6) unbeaten as England passed the ground record ODI score as well as having earlier posted more runs against the West Indies than they had ever done before.
The West Indies were then all over the place, seemingly unwilling to be embarrassed by being bowled out cheaply as they were in Bristol and therefore not playing aggressively enough to pose any problems for England.
Once Gayle was dismissed for 11 having hit a couple of boundaries, they seemed to shut up shop and it wasn't until the batting Power Play was taken with them placed on 174 for seven after 37 overs that they began to play some shots.
Before that though, Gayle pulled Broad to Bopara at mid-on, Ramnaresh Sarwan was well caught by Strauss at cover as Anderson struck, Morton was needlessly run out for 21 and Bravo (26) shuffled too far across his crease to be trapped in front by Bresnan.
He had struck Mascarenhas for two big sixes, strokes which seemed out of keeping witht he flow of the West Indian innings as Shivnarine Chanderpaul dropped anchor at the other end.
He made 68 in 108 balls before holing in similar circumstances to Gayle, caught by Bopara attempting to pull Broad soon after the Power Play had finally been called for.
England bowled and fielded exceptionally well, which contributed to the slow rate of scoring although Ramdin hit a well-paced 45 with some inventive shots and some more classical strokes.
He was gone when he chopped Anderson into the right hand of Prior and Pollard (12) and Taylor (18) then ran themselves out, Pollard departing in farcical circumstances when he was run out off a wide by Prior while Taylor was left high and dry by Sulieman Benn.
Benn partially redeemed himself with some lusty blows, hitting Broad for six over midwicket and even Rampaul (16) got in on the act, dancing down the track to put Graeme Swann into the stands but it was all too little, too late. The off-spinner had his revenge when he clean bowled him and the game was ended when Benn was bowled by Anderson for a career-best effort of 31.
© Cricket World 2009