Gayle And Narine Give West Indies Series Victory

Gayle And Narine Give West Indies Series Victory
Gayle And Narine Give West Indies Series Victory
©Action Images / Jed Leicester Livepic

West Indies 177-5 (Gayle 53) beat
New Zealand 116 (Narine 4-12) by 61 runs
Second Twenty20 International, Lauderhill

Chris Gayle once again led West Indies' assault on New Zealand’s bowlers in the second match in Florida. Like yesterday, he was slow to get going – he played out a maiden over from Kyle Mills – but, also like yesterday, he took a strong liking to Doug Bracewell’s fast-medium pace, hitting him for consecutive sixes over long-on to bring up his fifty from 34 balls. 

He fell shortly afterwards for 53 as the first of a Nathan McCullum double strike which threatened to bring the Black Caps back into the match. However, Dwayne Bravo came to the crease and struck four powerful sixes during a destructive knock of 35 from just 11 balls which helped them plunder 53 from the final four overs, as they finished on 177 for five.

Rob Nicol and Martin Guptill got New Zealand off to a solid start, putting on 26 for the first wicket, but the wheels fell off when Sunil Narine was brought into the attack. He dismissed Guptill with his fifth ball and Nicol with his sixth to put himself on a hat-trick – something he nearly completed in his next over when he induced Daniel Flynn to edge just short of Chris Gayle at slip. He found support from Samuel Badree, who claimed pinch-hitter Tim Southee as his maiden international victim, as well as Dwayne Bravo and Marlon Samuels, who picked up a couple of wickets each.

However, Narine was the real star, and ended with astonishing figures of four for 12 as he completely bamboozled New Zealand’s batsmen with his subtle variations and bowled for much of the time with two slips – virtually unheard of in a Twenty20 match. Doug Bracewell struck a couple of lusty blows to take the Kiwis past three figures, but they were eventually dismissed for 116 in the penultimate over to lose by 61 runs.

And with that, West Indies' first international series in North America was over, and was roundly agreed to have been a success both on and off the field, with a dominant display by the ‘home’ side played out in front of the passionate and vociferous diasporic Caribbean community which made up the sell-out crowd. 

As for New Zealand, they looked rusty – as well they might given their dearth of international cricket of late – and have only really gained injuries from their brief sojourn into the unknown. Their captain, Ross Taylor, is a doubt for the five One-Day Internationals, which begin in Jamaica on Thursday, while Ronnie Hira and Jacob Oram also picked up injuries.

© Cricket World 2012

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