Jason Roy and Joe Root sink West Indies after Chris Gayle flays England

first_img Quick guide Follow Guardian sport on social media It was not just Gayle and his penchant for smearing Moeen into the Greenidge and Haynes Stand with the trade winds. Darren Bravo’s 30-ball 40 was packed with meaty strikes, while the unlikely Nurse flayed 25 from nine deliveries at the death. This cameo from the No 9 included the last ball for a 23rd six of the innings, surpassing the record West Indies had shipped in 2014 against New Zealand.Figures of three for 37 from eight overs of Stokes thus felt a triumph in the circumstances – not least the slower ball that Gayle chopped on to his stumps – while Adil Rashid, curiously held back until the 34th over, also picked up three in a nine-over spell, albeit at a more costly 74 runs.Moeen was taken for 85 from 10 overs, Liam Plunkett, the man to miss out on Gayle’s wicket earlier, leaked 54 from six, and Wood’s second burst included three sixes in his last over.The run chase that followed may have put these returns into context but a question mark over the potency of England’s attack on such roads remains. Support The Guardian Facebook Share on Pinterest Pinterest Jason Roy is not short on self-belief. And in the one-day series opener between West Indies and England here on Wednesday – a match that made spectating, or simply walking past the ground, something of a health hazard – this character trait very much came to the fore.Lesser players might have felt a touch sheepish at the mid-innings break. Having dropped Chris Gayle on nine, Roy watched the opener plough on for 135 from 123 balls, blazing 12 out of a world record 23 sixes from the home side as they posted an imposing 360 for eight.But Roy does not tend to dwell on such things and, as the shadows lengthened in Bridgetown and the travelling supporters earned relief from the sun, this talented right-hander put on a show of significant chutzpah. He crunched 123 from 85 balls to set England up for their highest successful run chase. Indeed, only South Africa knocking off targets of 435 in 2006 and 372 in 2016 (both against Australia) sit higher in the all-time list.Joe Root finessed 102 from 97 balls before falling with one required and, after Eoin Morgan’s 65 and an unbeaten 20 from Ben Stokes, was central to this six-wicket win. But this latest show of muscle from the world’s No 1 side owed so much to its rocketing start. Thank you for your feedback. Share on Messenger Hide Share via Email Reuse this content Twitter … we have a small favour to ask. More people are reading and supporting The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many new organisations, we have chosen an approach that allows us to keep our journalism accessible to all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford. 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Photograph: Chesnot/Getty Images Europe Joe Root England in West Indies 2019 The Spin: sign up and get our weekly cricket email. Chris Gayle celebrates his century. Photograph: Randy Brooks/AFP/Getty Images Twitter: follow us at @guardian_sportFacebook: like our football and sport pagesInstagram: our favourite photos, films and storiesYouTube: subscribe to our football and sport channels Share on Facebook Was this helpful? West Indies cricket team But Gayle and Shai Hope then set about a stand of 131 in 21 overs with the latter playing the aggressor. Hope disappointed in the Tests but in ODIs he has form, following back-to-back unbeaten centuries against Bangladesh this year with a 65-ball 64 here. The pick from his stylish work was a straight six off Moeen Ali that was last seen heading for the snorkelers in Carlisle Bay.That was one of seven white Kookaburras that needed replacing during the innings, a figure that would have been considerably fewer had Roy not shelled Gayle at point. He had been stuck in first gear for 33 balls but soon broke the shackles with a six off Moeen; it was his 477th in international cricket, putting him one ahead of the record holder, Pakistan’s Shahid Afridi.Gayle needed 76 balls for his half-century but just 24 more for three-figures, celebrating his 24th ODI century in typical box office fashion by placing his helmet on the end of his bat and raising it to all quarters. This is Gayle’s final home series before a plan to retire after the summer’s World Cup and he appears keen to milk it. Cricket Share on LinkedIn match reports Show Share on Twitter Since you’re here… Chris Gayle Topics Share on WhatsApp Roy had put on 91 in 10.5 overs with Jonny Bairstow (34) and when he was eventually out slicing the leg-spinner Devendra Bishoo to short third man, having brutalised 15 fours and three sixes, England required 156 to win from 23 overs. Given their abundance of batting talent, a slightly sterile attack and a pitch allowing risk-free ball-striking, it simply needed calm heads to wrap up the job.That said, West Indies will rue a raft of dropped catches including four off Roy, with Ashley Nurse so often the guilty party. They may also look back on a first innings that, for all the showmanship from Gayle, also included the 39-year-old eating up an abundance of deliveries before truly finding his rhythm. Roy, by contrast, brought up his seventh ODI century from 65 balls, with a solitary defensive shot.Morgan claimed he was happy to bowl upon losing the toss and after a 10-over powerplay in which Chris Woakes removed John Campbell in the deep via a smart slower ball, Mark Wood once again topped 90mph on the speed gun and West Indies reach 49 for one, the England captain appeared vindicated. England cricket teamlast_img read more