Gayle’s fiery knock takes Windies to 240 for 7 in rain-curtailed 3rd ODI
Port of Spain: In what appears to be his swan-song appearance for the West Indies, Chris Gayle smashed his way to a 72-run knock, leading the hosts to a competitive 240 for seven against India in the rain-curtailed third and final ODI here on Wednesday.
The weather continued to play havoc in this tour of India as the rain forced two interruptions after the hosts elected to bat in the match, which they need to win to level the series.
West Indies reached a healthy 158 for two in 22 overs when rain forced a second interruption and at resumption the contest was reduced to 35-overs-a-side.
Shai Hope (24) and Shimron Hetmyer (25) resumed the innings but they did not last long with Mohammed Shami dismissing the latter and Ravindra Jadeja cleaning up the former.
Nicholas Pooran played a whirlwind 16-ball 30-run knock to take the hosts past 200-run mark. The left-hander smartly handled the Indian spinners, launching Jadeja and Yuzvendra Chahal for massive sixes.
Shami struck again by sending back Pooran, who chipped a full-length delivery straight to Mainsh Pandey. Carlos Brathwaite added 16 runs with a six and a four.
Gayle came out with a clear plan to attack the Indian bowlers, making the most of what seemed his last international performance.
Whether it was Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Shami or Khaleel Ahmed (3/68) no Indian pacer was spared with Gayle hammering them for sixes with remarkable ease.
Spinner Chahal was the only bowler who commanded some respect from the West Indian marauder.
The left-handed opener — the self proclaimed Universe boss — punished the Indian bowlers with five sixes and eight shots to the fence in his entertaining knock.
He added 115 runs with fellow opener Evin Lewis, who was equally impressive with his 29-ball 43 which was laced with five fours and three sixes.
It was Chahal who brought some relief for the Indian camp by dismissing Lewis and soon Gayle too departed by hitting one straight to rival captain Virat Kohli at mid-off.
Soon after his dismissal, the Indian players rushed towards Gayle, shaking hands with him. Kohli even did Gayle typical jig before the burly West Indian walked off.
Gayle, in his inimitable style, put his helmet on the top of his bat’s handle and lifted the bat in the air while walking off. Near the boundary ropes, he hurled the helmet in the air only to catch it back.