If the heartwarming sendoff for Chris Gayle by the India fielders in the third ODI at Port of Spain was anything to go by, the West Indies veteran might very well have played his final knock in his country’s colours.
The 39-year-old had recently overtaken Brian Lara to become the highest ODI run-getter for Windies while also bringing up 300 appearances in the format. On Wednesday, the Jamaican opener lit up the Queen’s Park Oval in Trinidad with a 41-ball blitz which fetched a staggering 72 runs.
The southpaw was in explosive mood from the very go after skipper Jason Holder won the toss and elected to bat first and he struck a total of 13 boundaries during his brief but entertaining stay at the crease.
Here, we take a closer look at the veteran opening batsman’s display in what was his 301st ODI appearance for Windies and potentially, his last.
Gayle started in characteristic fashion, playing out a maiden over before exploding into life at the Queen’s Park Oval. The West Indies stalwart struck a huge six off Mohammed Shami in the second over of the innings and did not look back from there as he stitched together a brisk stand with fellow opener Evin Lewis.
The duo added a staggering 114 runs in the first 10 overs with Gayle going on the rampage on the way to a 54th ODI half-century. His 41-ball cameo was brought to an end in the 12th over of the innings by Khaleel Ahmed after Virat Kohli completed an excellent diving catch at mid-off.
Carnage in Trinidad!— ICC (@ICC) August 14, 2019
After 10 overs, West Indies have put on a staggering 114/0, and Chris Gayle is 65* off 33 balls. More than 💯 runs have come in the last six overs alone!
Is 5️⃣0️⃣0️⃣ on?!#WIvIND LIVE 👇https://t.co/9qllLXKgDt pic.twitter.com/cjON9jv5kv
Gayle loves to bide his time at the crease before he switches gears but he took the attack to the Indians from the very start on Wednesday with the pitch showing barely any assistance for the bowlers.
It wasn’t just mindless hitting from the Windies man as he picked his deliveries to go on the offensive. He was strong on both sides of the ground and played some terrific cover drives as well to add to his effortless hoicks over the on-side.
The experienced opener gave no respite to any of India’s bowlers with Shami, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Khaleel all getting the same treatment in a rapid-fire first 10 overs.
Chris Gayle in ODIs:— Sports update. (@Shafaqut94) August 14, 2019
- Made his debut in 1999
- First man to score a century in all three formats
- Fastest double century
- Third man to score a century against 11 different countries
- 10,480 runs
- 25 centuries
- 54 fifties
- 331 sixes
- 1,128 fours
End of an era.#WIVIND pic.twitter.com/SAgCGLKUVN
Gayle looked to be in control for 90 per cent of his innings but he did live dangerous at times with a couple of mistimed shots and edges failing to find the fielder.
He ultimately paid the price for attempting one shot too many when he flat-batted a length delivery from Khaleel. He could have easily have notched up a ton on an excellent batting surface if he had shown a little more patience.
VERDICT – 9/10
The veteran will be disappointed to not touch three-figures in what was potentially his final outing for the West Indies but his explosive start along with that of Evin Lewis ensured that the hosts were on the front foot in a must-win clash.
His quick-fire fifty set the platform for the hosts to build on in the final ODI and he can look back fondly on an illustrious and top-class international career for the Caribbean side if that indeed was a final goodbye.
Chris Gayle for West Indies in ODIs:— Bharath Seervi (@SeerviBharath) August 14, 2019
- Most matches
- Most runs
- Most 100s
- Highest individual score
- Most sixes
- Most ducks
No other cricketer from the top nations has all these records for his country! #Legend @henrygayle
The first day of the second Ashes Test at Lord’s was washed out before a ball had been bowled, forcing England’s Jofra Archer to wait for his eagerly-anticipated debut.
The most exciting moment of a bleak day at the home of cricket came when Archer, one of the stars of England’s victorious World Cup campaign and bowler of the super over which sealed the trophy, was awarded his first cap by Sussex team-mate Chris Jordan.
Only eight of Jordan’s 78 England appearances have come in the five-day format but he was easily the most apt choice to welcome his fellow Barbadian into the fold, having helped the man he calls “a little brother” swap the Caribbean for Hove three years ago.
When Jordan presented Archer with his Three Lions cap, shortly before 3pm, there was still hope of seeing him in action but fading hopes of getting captains Joe Root and Tim Paine to complete the toss disappeared as another heavy downpour struck.
🗣 @CJordan: “I know this is the pinnacle for you. One of the first things you said to me when you came over to England was you wanted to play Test cricket for England. That time has come.”— England Cricket (@englandcricket) August 14, 2019
🧢 Watch the moment @JofraArcher received his first Test cap!#Ashes pic.twitter.com/LhNQMOIeIG
Forecasts are better for day two, when the famous old ground will turn red in support of the Ruth Strauss Foundation – a lung cancer charity set up to honour the late wife of Andrew Strauss, the former England captain and director of men’s cricket.
Fans have been asked to wear the colour and both teams will wear limited-edition caps and shirts to be auctioned off, one of several fund-raising initiatives in place on Thursday.
Play will be extended by half an hour on each of the remaining four days, meaning only one session has been lost to the weather at this stage.
England, who have yet to reveal whether Sam Curran or Jack Leach will take the final place in their side, are 1-0 down after their heavy loss in the series opener at Edgbaston but will be buoyed by the presence of Archer’s formidable 90mph pace.
Provided by Press Association Sports
Day One in the second Ashes Test between England and Australia at Lord’s was washed away without a ball being bowled after persistent showers played spoilsport throughout Wednesday.
The hosts handed a maiden Test cap to Jofra Archer on a gloomy and wet day at Lord’s with the Barbados-born pacer receiving the honour from his close friend Chris Jordan.
Australia lead the five-match series 1-0 after their 251 run win in the opener at Edgbaston and will be hoping to take another giant step to their first Ashes series win on English soil since 2001.
Will Joe Root and his men restore parity in the Ashes at Lord’s or will the Aussies extend their electric start to the series? Follow the ball-by-ball commentary below from Lord’s to stay tuned to all the action.
☔️ PLAY ABANDONED— Lord's Cricket Ground (@HomeOfCricket) August 14, 2019
😔 Sadly the rain has failed to stop so play has been abandoned as Day 1 comes to a close at Lord's.
For those with tickets for today, please see the reverse of your ticket for full refund details.#LoveLords | #Ashes pic.twitter.com/AcqVQvyFAn