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Saturday March 02, 2024

Hope guides West Indies past England in 1st ODI

By AFP
December 05, 2023

NORTH SOUND, Antigua and Barbuda: Shai Hope´s 16th hundred and the rampaging support of all-rounder Romario Shepherd lifted the West Indies to a record-breaking four-wicket victory in a high-scoring opening duel of the three-match One-Day International series at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium in Antigua on Sunday.

Set a daunting target of 326 by the visitors, the home captain anchored the effort through an unsteady period and then exploded with an array of mighty strokes, finishing the match with three sixes off Sam Curran in the penultimate over to seal the result with an unbeaten 109.

Shai Hope, of West Indies, hits 6 to win the first ODI cricket match between England and West Indies at Sir Vivian Richards Stadium in North Sound, Antigua and Barbuda, on December 3, 2023. — AFP
Shai Hope, of West Indies, hits 6 to win the first ODI cricket match between England and West Indies at Sir Vivian Richards Stadium in North Sound, Antigua and Barbuda, on December 3, 2023. — AFP

This effort surpassed the previous best of 276 by the West Indies against Sri Lanka in 2021 as the highest successful run-chase in an ODI by any team at the venue. Hope´s innings spanned 83 deliveries and was embellished by seven sixes and four fours, earning him the “Man of the Match” award.

Yet it was the role of Shepherd, who blazed 48 off 28 balls in a sixth-wicket partnership of 89 which got the West Indies back into the match when it appeared to have slipped away from them at 213 for five in the 39th over despite 66 at the top of the order from Alick Athanaze and an opening stand of 104 with Brandon King.

“Stats and record will come along by the way but my aim is to win matches and I´m happy to have played a part in that today,” was Hope´s immediate assessment of his effort, preferring to offer fulsome praise of Shepherd. “He was amazing. He is someone you can always rely on and he continues to show his worth at this level.”

Earlier, Harry Brook held the England innings together through the middle overs but it was blistering assaults at the top and tail of the 50 overs which lifted them to a competitive 325 all out. Openers Phil Salt and Will Jacks blazed 77 at almost 10 runs per over after Jos Buttler opted to take first strike.

Hope´s bowlers then took advantage of a two-paced surface to pull the scoring rate down significantly before Sam Curran and Brydon Carse regained the frenetic early tempo in an eighth-wicket stand of 66 as 86 runs were taken off the final nine overs the innings.

Brook´s 71 came off 72 balls with seven fours and two sixes as the West Indies bowlers mixed up the pace of their deliveries to earn reward. Spinner Gudakesh Motie and pacers Shepherd and Oshane Thomas claimed two wickets each.

Curran was then taken for 15 in the 45th, this time Hope punishing a slower ball to the wind-assisted leg side, before he sent Carse the same way as the 47th went for 17. Atkinson held his own to go full and straight and pin Shepherd, but the damage had been done.

With 19 needed from 12, Hope took the opportunity to end the match sooner rather than later. Curran, clearly struggling, served up a full toss that was devoured for 93 metres over wide long-on, then followed a dot with an equally juicy length ball dispatched into the stands. Once Hope’s subdued century celebrations were done, he blitzed a short ball back towards the same stand to really get the party started.

“I thought it was a fantastic effort by us with the bat,” said Buttler in reflecting on the match. “It needed a special innings to chase it down and West Indies got that from Hope with support from Shepherd.”

In the aftermath of a disastrous World Cup defence in India, England now fnd themselves in a must-win situation going into the second match.

England won the toss

England innings

Salt c Carty b Motie 45

Jacks c Hope b Joseph 26

Crawley run out 48

Duckett b Cariah 20

Brook c Joseph b Shepherd 71

Buttler c Athanaze b Motie 3

Livingstone lbw b Shepherd 17

Curran run out 38

Brydon Carse not out 31

Rehan c & b Thomas 12

Extras: (lb 1, w 9) 10

Total: (all out, 50 overs) 325

Fall of wickets: 1-77, 2-77, 3-110 , 4-181, 5-191 , 6-232 , 7-239, 8-305, 9-321, 10-325

Bowling: Joseph 10-0-65-1, Romario 10-0-77-2, Gudakesh 10-0-49-2, Oshane 10-0-57-2, Cariah 10-0-76-1

West Indies innings

Athanaze lbw b Rehan 66

Brandon b Livingstone 35

Carty lbw b Carse 16

Hope not out 109

Hetmyer c Carse b Atkinson 32

Rutherford c Brook b Rehan 6

Shepherd lbw b Atkinson 48

Joseph not out 2

Extras: (lb 3, nb 1, w 8) 12

Total: (6 wickets, 48.5 overs) 326

Fall of wickets: 1-104, 2-106 , 3-144, 4-200, 5-213, 6-302

Bowling: Curran 9.5-0-98-0, Atkinson 10-0-62-2, Brydon 9-0-73-1, Rehan 10-1-40-2, Livingstone 10-0-50-1

Result: West Indies won by 4 wickets

Player of the match: Shai Hope

Umpires: Chris Brown and Gregory Brathwaite