Must win for West Indies
GROS ISLET – A close finish is anticipated between West Indies and Pakistan when the two sides meet in the fifth, final and deciding game of their five-match One Day international series at the Beausejour Stadium today.
West Indies need a win to draw the delicately poised series, punctuated with twists and turns, which Pakistan currently lead 2-1.
The visitors stormed back from a precarious position to win the first match while the home side rebounded to win the second game convincingly.
However, the third match climaxed in a dramatic last-ball, last wicket tie before Pakistan prevailed in the rain affected fourth ODI.
Given the importance of the final match, West Indies are likely to bring Chris Gayle back to his usual opening spot in the batting order but would also expect him to fire.
Gayle has had a poor run of form thus far and was pushed down the order, allowing Devon Smith to open with Johnson Charles in the last game.
The bowling looks in good shape with Kemar Roach, Jason Holder and Sunil Narine striking consistently with the ball.
Pakistan captain Misbah-ul-Haq has been a thorn in the side of the Caribbean side by leading from the front whenever the team is in disarray.
Irrespective of the outcome, Pakistan have maintained their record of not losing a bilateral ODI series in the West Indies since 1988.
They have won the last two in 2005 and 2011.
Dwayne Bravo’s men are now faced with the task of winning the fifth match to avoid losing another home series to Pakistan. (CMC)