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What A Welcome Relief!

By Ray Sundar
March, 8th, 2010
The captains, Gayle and Utseya, strode to the pitch for the coin toss as brilliant sunshine descended on the field of play at Providence, Guyana. The latter won the toss and opted to bat. Soon thereafter they ran into trouble as Sibanda attempted an ill-advised single and was run-out via a direct hit by Roach for 5. Masakadza was next to go, caught off Roach for 14 - 2 wickets for 34. A portent of things to come? We shall see!

Tailor and Taibu stemmed the tide, putting on 59 for the third wicket before Tailor was out LBW off Gayle for a well played 47. His innings contained 4x4's and 1x6. Except for a 72 ball 50 (5x4's) by Chigumbura, wickets continue to tumble as though a cheap deck of cards in the path of a ferocious tsunami. Zimbabwe succumbed for 206 off 49.5 overs.

Chasing 207 for that elusive victory, Gayle came out with both barrels blasting, clobbering 7x4's and 2x6's in a superb knock, spanning 111 deliveries. In attempting another big shot he was comprehensively bowled for 88 by Cremer. In the meantime, until Deonarine's arrival, the other batsmen were befuddled by the spinners - Barath 7, Bernard 1, Shiv 10, Fletcher 0.

Gayle and Deonarine pushed the score to 168. A cautious Deonarine, the eventual man of the match, soon began to flex his muscles, disdainfully dispatching 6 balls to the boundary plus a six. He and Sammy saw the boys in maroon to a face saving victory when Sammy slammed a four to end the match.

Pollard's downward spiral continues unabated, and cause for much concern, as he conclusively demonstrated he is not ready for prime time. Scores of 5 and 7 in the first two ODI's just will not suffice. Perhaps shelving him for the remainder of the series will allow quality time to recover his faculties in time for the IPL T20 season.

Otis Gibson and David Williams, coach and assistant coach respectively, must have breathed a collective sigh of relief when Sammy's willow crushed Price's delivery at 47.5 overs for four. And, I might add, a timely morale boosting victory. This ended an embarrassing seven month win less streak for the West Indies. The five match series is precariously perched at 1-1.


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