West Indies 155-5 (Gayle 36, Sammy 30no) beat
England 152-7 (Santokie 4-21) by 5 wickets
Second Twenty20 International, Barbados
It was a case of familiar failings bring about a familiar result for England as they slumped to a series defeat to an impressive West Indies side in the second Twenty20 International in Barbados.
Their top-order folded to leave Jos Buttler and Alex Hales to resurrect the innings, with the death bowling again leaving a lot to be desired as Darren Sammy smashed 30 not out off just nine balls.
The game was in the balance when he came to the crease after Tim Bresnan had dismissed Marlon Samuels and Andre Russell with successive deliveries to leave 31 needed off the final three overs. England, though, were unable to find their yorkers as Jade Dernbach followed up a couple successful locatings of the block-hole by delivering a low full toss which Sammy launched over mid-wicket for six. He then tucked into Bresnan, who ended with uncomplimentary figures of two for 51, hitting two half-volleys for six and then finishing the match with a savage square cut to the boundary.
West Indies had won with seven balls to spare and had shown, once again, just how useful it is to have a succession of hard-hitting all-rounders in your ranks and just why they are in with a good chance of defending their ICC World Twenty20 crown.
In contrast to England, their opening pair of Dwayne Smith and Chris Gayle had given their side an excellent start by adding 48 in little more than four overs. Smith was, perhaps surprisingly, the aggressor and launched three sixes before he was caught by Bresnan at cover off Dernbach for 30 off 16 balls. Gayle then continued the boundary-clearing theme and hit four maximums in all before being bowled by Ravi Bopara when on 36 off 30 balls.
Bopara and James Tredwell were again the stand-out England bowlers and clawed their side back into the game after their poor start in their defence of their total of 152 for seven. Bopara conceded only 10 runs from his four overs of cutters, while Tredwell delivered four tidy overs of off-spin at a cost of 27 runs. The rest, including second spinner Stephen Parry (2-0-17-0), were expensive as Samuels set up Sammy’s late onslaught with 28 off 35 balls.
England had earlier elected to bat and brought in Moeen Ali and Parry for the out-of-form Ben Stokes and injured skipper Stuart Broad, while the West Indies gave a game to Krishmar Santokie. It proved to be an inspired move as he took four for 21 to be named man of the match as the tourists endured a torrid start.
Santokie removed Michael Lumb (4) and Ali (5), while first-game-tormentor Samuel Badree accounted for new captain Eoin Morgan (3) to make it 26 for three as he again delivered four overs of meticulously accurate fast leg-spin, this time at a cost of just 16 runs.
Hales and Buttler led the recovery by sharing 76 for the fourth-wicket, with Hales finding useful form ahead of the forthcoming World T20 by hitting two sixes in a 36-ball 40 that was ended when he was caught off Dwayne Bravo. Buttler continued his all-or-nothing theme of late by hitting 67 off 43 balls to follow up scores of 0, 99 and 0.
He was dismissed by Santokie in the penultimate over, with the 29 year-old also removing Bopara (14 off 15 balls) in the same over as England’s innings failed to ignite in the final couple of overs. Hales admitted that England were 10 runs short of par at his mid-innings chat with Sky Sports, but the way Sammy played later, it was more like 30.
The two teams will have one last chance to finalise their preparations ahead of the imminent tournament in Bangladesh when they meet in the third match on Thursday.
© Cricket World 2014