Sammy Blasts West Indies To Victory

West Indies celebrate
The West Indies took their second win in a row as they beat Australia by six wickets
©REUTERS / Action Images

West Indies 179-4 (Gayle 53, Sammy 34no) beat
Australia 178-8 (Maxwell 45) by six wickets
ICC World Twenty20 2014 Group Two, Dhaka

West Indies skipper Darren Sammy smacked an unbeaten 34 off just 13 deliveries to lead his side to a rampaging six-wicket win over Australia in their ICC World Twenty20 Super Ten clash at Mirpur.

At the Sher-e-Bangla Stadium, Chris Gayle scored 53 off 35 balls before Sammy guided the West Indies over the victory line with some big hitting.

They reached 179 for four in 19.4 overs with two balls to spare as the defending champions recorded their second win on the bounce.

This was after Glenn Maxwell’s 45 runs had guided Australia to 178 for eight in their allotted 20 overs.

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Chasing 179, the West Indies started with a bang, as Gayle finally woke up from his slumber. The big-hitting batsman had been sedated in his outings against Bangladesh and India, but smacked Australia’s bowlers to all parts of the ground.

He put up 50 runs with Dwayne Smith (17), who was a bit subdued unlike the last game, yet the scoring rate never fell down.

Smith was dismissed off the last ball of the fifth over, but Gayle carried on regardless. He added another 51 runs for the second wicket with Lendl Simmons as the 100-run mark came up for the West Iindies in the 12th over.

Gayle reached his 12th T20I fifty off only 31 balls, and in a big blow to the chase, he was dismissed after scoring only two more runs. In all, he scored 53 runs off 35 balls with six fours and two sixes, giving impetus to the innings.

Simmons scored 26 runs off 24 balls, with three fours, but didn’t last long after that, while Marlon Samuels (12) also couldn’t get going. It seemed that Australia had fought their way back into the chase but Dwayne Bravo held one end up, scoring 27 runs off 12 balls, with two fours and two sixes.

Everything else was happening at the other end though. With 31 runs needed off the last two overs, Sammy first carted Mitchell Starc (2-50) for 19 runs in the penultimate over of the innings, and then smacked two sixes in the first four balls of James Faulkner’s last over to trigger wild celebrations. Doug Bollinger (1-34) and James Muirhead (1-21) were the other wicket-takers.

Earlier, Australia won the toss and opted to bat first. Unlike their match against Pakistan, both their openers made it to the second over. Then, Aaron Finch (16) opened up as the runs came at nearly 10 per over, putting up 33 runs for the first wicket with David Warner.

The left-hander took a little more time settling in, while at the other end, Shane Watson (2) was again dismissed cheaply, stumped off Sunil Narine (2-19). The all-rounder failed to move his back-foot back over the line even as keeper Dinesh Ramdin only removed the bails on a second attempt.

It brought out Maxwell to the crease and he carried on from where he had left off in the first match as the fifty came up for Australia in seven overs. Even so, before reaching this mark, they had lost Warner who was bowled by Samuel Badree (2-37) after scoring 20 off 14 balls with four fours.

Maxwell then took centre-stage as he put on 36 runs with skipper George Bailey (12) and another 23 runs with Brad Hodge. He hit 45 runs off only 22 balls, with five fours and three sixes, but to Australia’s bad luck fell just when he was threatening to take the game away from the defending champions. He was caught by Dwayne Bravo, another stupendous catch, after nearly messing up the chance.

Hodge then marshalled the lower order as the scoring rate was kept up despite wickets falling at regular intervals. He scored 35 runs off 26 balls, with two fours and one six, helping the score past the 150-run mark. Then, James Faulkner (13) and Brad Haddin (15 not out) scored some quick runs in the final overs to help Australia reach more than a par-score on a good batting track.

© Cricket World 2014