Pollard Powers West Indies To Impressive Victory
West Indies 294-8 (Pollard 102, Barath 41) beat
Australia 252 (Lee 59) by 42 runs
Fourth One-Day International, Saint Lucia
Kieron Pollard thumped a 69-ball century to help set up a 42-run win for the West Indies over Australia in the fourth One-Day International in Saint Lucia.
Pollard smashed five fours and eight sixes as he powered the West Indies to a score of 294 for eight and he then took a wicket as Australia were bowled out for 252 in reply.
They lost wickets early on in their run chase but despite a valiant effort from David Hussey (57) and Brett Lee (59), conceded a defeat that means they are unable to win the series, West Indies taking a 2-1 lead into the final match.
The West Indies innings was a ground record for them and was built around Pollard's explosive innings but he was given a solid platform by openers Adrian Barath (41) and Johnson Charles (37) before Darren Bravo made 25.
Although Marlon Samuels (11) and Dwayne Bravo (0) fell cheaply, Pollard was in no mood to spare the bowlers, saving much of his savagery for Lee, who he smote for six over midwicket to reach his century - his second in 55 matches - and ensuring that instead of being knocked back by losing wickets, they were able to counter-attack.
He fell one ball after reaching his century, having made 102 in 70 balls, when another attempt at a big hit was caught by Michael Hussey as he miscued.
Along with Andre Russell, who made 34 in 32 balls and Darren Sammy, who scored 31 not out in 13, they produced a magnificent charge towards the end of the innings, Sammy ending the West Indian innings by hammering Lee into the stands as 23 runs came from the last six balls.
In reply, Australia captain Shane Watson crashed 28 in 24 balls but Australia were quickly in trouble at 62 for three as David Warner (1) and Peter Forrest (24) also fell.
George Bailey, who made 25, and Michael Hussey, with 26, both made starts but failed to go on and when Matthew Wade was caught by Russell off Pollard, Australia were 179 for six.
David Hussey completed his half-century and then fell, bowled by Kemar Roach but Lee smashed five sixes of his own as he single-handedly kept Australia's admittedly slim hopes alive.
Five boundaries also gave the West Indies a few nervous moments but after Clint McKay (2) and Xavier Doherty (1) were dismissed by Dwayne Bravo and Sunil Narine, Lee was finally the last man to fall when he was caught by substitute Garay Mathurin off Roach.
Roach, Bravo, Sammy and Russell all picked up two wickets.
The final game in the series is in Saint Lucia on Sunday (25th March).
© Cricket World 2012