Bravo, Gayle make merry as Windies pile up 272

Published: Saturday, October 28, 2006, 23:53 [IST]
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Ahmedabad:Chris Gayle and Dwayne Bravo made merry at the expense of the English attack, both cracking centuries as the two put on 174 runs for the second wicket to take West Indies to a mammoth 272 for 4 in their final and inconsequential Super Eight Group 'A' match being played at the Sardar Patel Stadium, Motera here today.

The match is of no significance as West Indies with two wins out of two, have already qualified, while England with two straight losses have no chances of making the semifinals.

Brian Lara won the toss and decided to give his batsmen some practice by electing to bat first.

Chris Gayle, as usual, took the attack to the Englismen right from the beginning, launching an attack on James Anderson as he hooked him for a boundary and then straight drove Jon Lewis, who was included in place of Steve Harmison, for another boundary.

At the other end, Shivnaraine Chanderpaul was also getting into the groove as he raced to 13 with two boundaries when Lewis struck, catching the southpaw plumb in front as the ball straightened after pitching on the middle stump.

The next man in, Dwayne Bravo, immediately took a liking to the bowling, starting with a flick of Anderson to the midwicket boundary and then cover driving Andrew Flintoff, who was bowling for the first time in a match after undergoing surgery. He also glanced Flintoff for another boundary to fine leg.

Bravo, then, turned his attention to Sajid Mahmood, hitting the bowler for two leg side fours in one over to step up the tempo.

In fact, Bravo dominated the attack in such a way that he beat Chris Gayle to his 50 which came in 60 balls and was studded with 10 boundaries.

Gayle also soon reached his 50 which surprisingly came in a much slower time of 80 balls and was studded with six boundaries.

The two then brought up their 100 partnership in just 124 balls as the English pace and spin alike did not have any answer to the broad blades of the two West Indian batsmen.

Both the batsmen then toyed with the attack and any bowling change Flintoff effected did not seem to bother them as the two easily accumulated runs without the minimal of risks to swell the score towards mammoth propotions.

The 150 run partnership was completed in just 181 balls and then Gayle who was beaten to his half century by his partner Bravo reached his 100 quicker in just 127 balls with 10 boundaries and a sixer. This was Gayles 14th ODI ton.

England should have had Bravo when he was on 79 and the team total of 198 but Chris Read missed an easy stumping chance of Dalrymple.

England however soon had the wicket they wanted when a direct throw by Flintoff found Chris Gayle short of his ground. Gayle made 101 in 128 balls with ten fours and a six with West Indies on 209, the two putting on 179 runs in 208 balls for the second wicket before being separated.

Bravo was then given another chance as Flintoff coming back for his second spell failed to latch on to a straight forward caught and bowled chance with the batsman on 89 and the team total on 219.

Sarwan then joined Bravo and continued in the same vein hitting Collingwood for a huge six.

Bravo after getting two chances finally reached the magic three figure mark his maiden ODI century with a four of James Anderson.

His century came in a stay of 166 minutes and after facing 117 balls and was studded with 12 boundaries and a huge six.

The English fielding also wilted under the sustained onslaught with Yardy dropping an simple catch at mid-off with Sarwan being the lucky batsman of Sajid Mahmood. He was on 26 in a team score of 255.

Sarwan and Bravo put on a 50 run partnership in jut 32 balls before Sarwan was finally caught in the deep by Paul Collingwood of Sajid Mahmood after making a brisk 19 ball 29 with three boundaries and a six.

Earlier, West Indies brought in Corry Collymore and Fidel Edwards for Ian Bradshaw and Dwayne Smith, while England brought in Jon Lewis for Steve Harmison from the match they lost to Australia.



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