One for Windies
GROS-ISLET – Devendra Bishoo bowled memorably on his debut to follow-up a purposeful 65 from Lendl Simmons, and propel West Indies to a seven-run victory in their first-ever Twenty20 International against Pakistan yesterday.
The leg-spinner continued the impressive start to his international career with four wickets for 17 runs from four overs to earn the Man of the Match award, as Pakistan, chasing 151 for victory, were restricted to 143 for nine in their 20 overs at the Beausejour Stadium.
Ravi Rampaul supported with three for 31 from his allotted four overs.
The victory was a morale-boosting win for Darren Sammy’s side, after the build-up to the match was overshadowed by the public confrontation between former West Indies captain Chris Gayle and the West Indies Cricket Board.
Simmons had struck seven fours and two sixes in 65 from 44 balls to lead West Indies to 150 for seven from their allocation of 20 overs.
Sammy then had Mohammad Hafeez caught at backward square leg for three in the second over of Pakistan’s chase, and Rampaul had Ahmed Shahzad caught at mid-on for 12 in the fourth over.
Bishoo then swung the match West Indies’ way, when he had Asad Safiq caught at short mid-on for 25 with his fourth delivery, and Misbah-ul-Haq hit wicket for a first-ball duck next ball to leave Pakistan 49 for four.
West Indies took a firm grip on the match when Shahid Afridi drove Bishoo to extra cover, and Sammy leapt into the air to hold an overhead catch. The Pakistan captain made 12.
The home team continued to pick off wickets in the remaining overs, but Umar Akmal kept the momentum going for Pakistan with the top score of 41.
Andre Russell kept his nerve however, after a wide first delivery, and West Indies were able to put the tumult of the previous two days behind them.
Earlier, Simmons and Darren Bravo got West Indies on track, when they collected 14 boundaries between them in a 99-run stand for the second wicket.
Simmons lofted Pakistani newcomer Junaid Khan for successive boundaries to long-on in the third over, and continued to pepper the boundary throughout his innings.
Bravo soon got into stride, driving Wahab Riaz over extra-cover and an open-faced glide off Wahab Riaz before dispatching Rehman over long-on for six.
With this pair at the crease, West Indies looked firmly in control, but Bravo was caught at long-on in the 13th over, and Simmons was run out two overs later to precipitate a slide.
West Indies lost four wickets for 25 in close to five overs, but Danza Hyatt and Christopher Barnwell stemmed the fall of wickets before a boundary from Ashley Nurse in the final over helped to push the total up.
Tomorrow, the two sides start a five-match One-day International series here (CMC)