Dyson hails Windies' win

Published: Sunday, April 13, 2008, 14:54 [IST]
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West Indies coach John Dyson heaped praise on his side Sunday for clinching their One-day International series against Sri Lanka with a game to spare.

Sri Lanka ran into the rampant pair of Shivnarine Chanderpaul and Marlon Samuels, and lost the rain-marred match by seven wickets under the Duckworth-Lewis Method on Saturday at Queen's Park Oval.

Chanderpaul hit an unbeaten 52, and Samuels scored 54 not out in a stand of 107 - unbroken - for the fourth wicket, as West Indies, chasing 125 for victory from 25 overs, hit the jackpot with 27 balls remaining.

"The guys did a sensational job overall," Dyson told reporters. "We bowled well and fielded well. There were a couple little errors that we would like to avoid, but overall the fielding effort was very, very good.

"When we batted, the experience of Chanderpaul and Samuels was perfect. They batted superbly."

The victory gave West Indies an unbeatable 2-0 lead in the three-match series, after they won the opening ODI by one wicket in a dramatic finish last Thursday at the same venue.

"Every series is important," he said. "I've always said that at international level, your aim is to win the series.

"Our group of guys has been working hard for some time and I'm really pleased for them that they've been able to put it together in front of their home crowd."

Dyson however, reserved special praise for the embattled Marlon Samuels, whose place in the side was under question, following a string of low scores in the preceding two-Test series and the first ODI.

Samuels returned from South Africa as the best batsman on either side of the West Indies' series there, but he has had to contend with a couple of major career threatening issues which seems to have undermined him.

He was banned by the ICC, cricket's World governing body, from bowling in international matches because of a suspect action, and he is to face a West Indies Cricket Board disciplinary hearing to answer charges of match-fixing after an investigation into his relationship with an Indian bookmaker.

"I've been saying all along that in the nets, Marlon has looked in great form," Dyson said. "Within himself, he has been relaxed and confident about his ability.

"It was a superb innings he played under a bit of pressure because of all the talk that has been going on and because we lost a couple of wickets with the new ball. He played the match perfectly. It just goes to show that Marlon has great skill."

The third and final ODI in the series will be contested on Tuesday at the Beausejour Stadium in St. Lucia.

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