West Indies hold off Afghanistan but Gayle falls short of Lara record

By Sports Desk July 04, 2019

West Indies signed off from the Cricket World Cup with a 23-run win over Afghanistan at Headingley - but Chris Gayle missed out on a place in the history books.

Victory meant the Caribbean side bookended their campaign in England with successes, having beaten Pakistan in their opener.

The rest of their campaign was better forgotten, however, and this could have provided another low moment until a mid-innings collapse from Afghanistan handed over the initiative.

Despite posting 311 for six, West Indies lost opener Gayle for seven. It was a third single-figure score of a disappointing World Cup for the veteran batsman and he finished the tournament as his team's fourth highest scorer.

And it meant he remains second on West Indies' all-time list of ODI run-scorers, stranded perhaps forever now 10 runs behind Brian Lara.

Gayle said before the World Cup this would be his goodbye to ODI cricket but the 39-year-old has since suggested he intends to play on. But in this sort of form, West Indies might do well to consider other options. 

This was surely a farewell to the World Cup for the showman and, after he was bogged down by Afghanistan's attack and looked to clout Dawlat Zadran over the off-side field, he nicked behind to Ikram Alikhil.

Evin Lewis showed better patience to make 58, Shai Hope plundered 77 and Nicholas Pooran scored 58 - with Gayle the only West Indies batsman to lose his wicket for a score below 30.

Afghanistan were then bowled out for 288, their chief contribution coming from 18-year-old Alikhil who reached 86 until he was defeated by Gayle's off spin.

 

Related items

  • Pollard not concerned about Windies ranking – that’s in the past Pollard not concerned about Windies ranking – that’s in the past

    West Indies white-ball cricket captain, Kieron Pollard is not paying attention to the difference in ranking between his side and India who are currently locked at a win apiece in their three-match T20i series.

  • Time to have fun – Pooran happy his hard work is paying off Time to have fun – Pooran happy his hard work is paying off

    West Indies batsman Nicholas Pooran, by all accounts, is a very talented player, who could do great things on the international scene, and his 38 not out to help his side to an 8-wicket win over India in the second T20 between the two in Thiruvanthapuram on Sunday is evidence of that fact.

    According to Pooran though, his talent isn’t enough to help him do well for the West Indies or even keep his place, and that he has to work hard.

    “I work very hard and happy it's finally paid off. I believe in my processes and glad it's coming off,” said Pooran, who came to the crease with the West Indies on 112-2 in chase of India’s 170 in the 14th over.

    Six overs later it was all over, as Pooran took over from Lendl Simmons, who scored a classy 67 from 45 deliveries, slamming four boundaries and two sixes in 18 balls to take the West Indies to 173-2

    That type of innings, Pooran said, was not difficult, because the hard work has already been done.

    “Cricket's all about having fun. I've put in a lot of hard work, so now is time for having fun,” he said.

    Pooran explained after the game that places in the middle order of the West Indies side comes at a premium with the type of talent that lies in it but that was good for the team.

    “There's a bit of competition in the middle order, but we all want to do good, that's all,” he said.

    Earlier Evin Lewis had scored 40 and Shimron Hetmyer, 23, in a bid to chase down India’s 170, which they were restricted to thanks to Hayden Walsh Jr’s 2-28 and Kesrick Williams’ 2-30.

    Those bowling figures, along with the start from Lewis and Simmons, meant there was no pressure for Pooran.

    “To be honest, we had no pressure. Tried not to panic, tried to build partnerships.”

  • Smith confident over state of MCG wicket for Boxing Day Test Smith confident over state of MCG wicket for Boxing Day Test

    Steve Smith is backing Melbourne Cricket Ground curator Matt Page to deliver an acceptable wicket for the Boxing Day Test between Australia and New Zealand.

    The final match at the MCG before that contest - the Sheffield Shield clash between Victoria and Western Australia - had to be cancelled on Saturday due to an unsafe pitch.

    Umpires called off day one after Western Australia batsmen Shaun Marsh and Marcus Stoinis were struck multiple times amid unpredictable bounce.

    Cricket Australia promised to ensure there is a wicket of "international standard" for December 26, though, and Smith has no doubt Page will do the necessary hard work.

    "I'm sure they'll produce something good for us on Boxing Day," the Australia superstar said ahead of the first Test in Perth this week.

    "It's a really fine line with that wicket. Pagey is a very good curator - he'll be working as hard as he can to try to get a wicket that is suitable for bat and ball.

    "These guys have a really tough job. They've tried a lot down in Melbourne but not been able to get something that is a bit more bowler friendly.

    "They're going to work hard over the next couple of weeks to get us a good wicket for Boxing Day."

© 2018 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.