Shai Hope Hundred Inspires Windies Whitewash

West Indies batsman Shai Hope drives for four during his unbeaten century (109). He won the Man-of-the-Match award following the Third and final ODI at the Ekana Cricket Stadium on Monday between West Indies and Afghanistan. West Indies won the match by five wickets to take the series 3-0. Courtesy CWI

LUC­KNOW, In­dia – CMC – El­e­gant stroke-mak­er Shai Hope carved out a sev­enth one-day hun­dred as West In­dies com­plet­ed a rare se­ries white­wash with a five-wick­et vic­to­ry over Afghanistan in the third One-Day In­ter­na­tion­al on Mon­day.

In pur­suit of 250 for vic­to­ry at the Atal Bi­hari Va­j­pay­ee In­ter­na­tion­al Sta­di­um, West In­dies re­cov­ered from a night­mare po­si­tion of four for two in the third over to reach their tar­get with eight balls to spare.

At the heart of the ef­fort was Hope’s en­ter­prise, the 26-year-old strik­ing a Man-of-the-Match un­beat­en 109 off 145 de­liv­er­ies to con­trol the run chase. The knock saw him end the se­ries with 229 runs at the same av­er­age, and move his ca­reer av­er­age to 50.

Ros­ton Chase, ad­judged Man-of-the-Se­ries for his tour av­er­age of 72 and six wick­ets, fin­ished on 42 not out off 32 de­liv­er­ies while Bran­don King hit 39 from 56 balls and cap­tain Kieron Pol­lard, a quick-fire 26-ball 32.

The re­sult was still some­what in the bal­ance at 182 for five in the 38th over but Hope and Chase put all doubts to rest in a 71-run, un­bro­ken sixth wick­et stand.

Afghanistan had ear­li­er man­aged their best to­tal of the se­ries when they ral­lied to 249 for sev­en off their 50 overs, be­hind As­ghar Afghan’s top score of 86 and an un­beat­en 50 from Mo­ham­mad Nabi.

Open­er Hazrat­ul­lah Za­zai belt­ed a live­ly 50 off 59 balls while Na­jibul­lah Zad­ran chipped in with a busy 30 off 32 balls down the or­der.

The hosts were lan­guish­ing at 118 for five in the 29th over af­ter seam­er Keemo Paul ((3-44) hurt the in­nings with an in­ci­sive burst but As­ghar and Nabi put on 127 for the sixth wick­et, giv­ing West In­dies their first re­al chal­lenge of the se­ries.

Opt­ing to bowl first, the Windies were re­ward­ed in the third over when debu­tant Ibrahim Zad­ran missed a flick at a full-length de­liv­ery from pac­er Alzarri Joseph (2-59) and was lbw for two at 15 for one.

Za­zai, who struck sev­en fours and two six­es in a pol­ished knock, then in­spired a 30-run sec­ond wick­et stand with Rah­mat Shah (10). They were be­gin­ning to sta­bilise the in­nings when Rah­mat lift­ed Paul to Nicholas Pooran at deep square in the 10th over.

When Paul re­moved Ikram Alikhil’s off stump for nine in the 18th over and then had Za­zai hol­ing out to deep mid-wick­et at 74 for four in the 20th over, Afghanistan were be­gin­ning to wob­ble.

How­ev­er, As­ghar start­ed the turn­around first by an­chor­ing a 44-run fifth wick­et stand with Na­jibul­lah, be­fore find­ing a firm al­ly in Nabi to com­plete the res­cue mis­sion.

All told, As­ghar struck three fours and half-dozen six­es while Na­jibul­lah count­ed four fours in a part­ner­ship which pushed their side be­yond the 100-run mark.

Chase even­tu­al­ly claimed Na­jibul­lah to a catch at slip by King in the 29th over as the left-han­der de­fend­ed but Nabi joined As­ghar to strike three fours and a six off 66 balls, and frus­trate West In­dies at the back end.

As­ghar fi­nal­ly per­ished in the penul­ti­mate over, slic­ing Joseph to Ro­mario Shep­herd at short third man.

Off-spin­ner Mu­jeeb-ur-Rah­man then gave Afghanistan a sen­sa­tion­al start, trap­ping both Evin Lewis (1) and Shim­ron Het­my­er (0) lbw in the space of four balls in the third over of the in­nings.

Hope re­mained sol­id, how­ev­er, post­ed a crit­i­cal 64 with King for the third wick­et be­fore adding a fur­ther 51 for the fourth with left-han­der Nicholas Pooran who made 21.

Cir­cum­spect ear­ly in his in­nings, Hope reached his fifty off 76 balls in the 27th over by punch­ing seam­er Yamin Ah­madzai to the cov­er bound­ary and com­plet­ed three fig­ures off 133 de­liv­er­ies in the 44th over, with the Windies all but as­sured of vic­to­ry.

As­ghar fi­nal­ly per­ished in the penul­ti­mate over, slic­ing Joseph to Ro­mario Shep­herd at short third man.

Off-spin­ner Mu­jeeb-ur-Rah­man then gave Afghanistan a sen­sa­tion­al start, trap­ping both Evin Lewis (1) and Shim­ron Het­my­er (0) lbw in the space of four balls in the third over of the in­nings.

Hope re­mained sol­id, how­ev­er, post­ed a crit­i­cal 64 with King for the third wick­et be­fore adding a fur­ther 51 for the fourth with left-han­der Nicholas Pooran who made 21.

Cir­cum­spect ear­ly in his in­nings, Hope reached his fifty off 76 balls in the 27th over by punch­ing seam­er Yamin Ah­madzai to the cov­er bound­ary and com­plet­ed three fig­ures off 133 de­liv­er­ies in the 44th over, with the Windies all but as­sured of vic­to­ry.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here