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It was the kind of plundering the Pirates of the Caribbean are famous for with Captain Jack Sparrow aka Chris Gayle and Commodore Barbossa played by Kieron Pollard waged war on the hapless Kiwis, looting 108 runs from a little less than 7 overs to power the West Indies to an excellent 209-2 in their 20 overs. The natives of Lauderhill, Florida did not know what hit them as the West Indies, calmly strolling at 101-2 in the 14th over exploded to life in the second half of the innings with Gayle posting an unbeaten 85 from 52 deliveries, while Pollard chipped in with a breathtaking 63 from 29 balls.
A shell shocked New Zealand appeared to have the game under control early on with the mandatory power play yielding 43 decent runs, for the loss of Dwayne Smith for 17, cleaned up by Doug Bracewell. Chris Gayle and Johnson Charles (24) added 74 patient runs for the 2nd wicket with Gayle starting in his new typical studied approach, scoring at exactly a run a ball from the first 32 balls he faced before adding 53 from his next 20. The Maestro's innings included 7 boundaries and 5 sixes, with Pollar chipping in with 5 big ones of his own to power the Windies to a massive total.
New Zealand responded well, making 51 runs in the powerplay for the loss of Martin Guptill (11) to give themselves a chance of competing, however a shoulder injury to skipper Ross Taylor forced him to retire hurt for 10, and is set to rule him out of a good part of the series to follow.
Thereafter, wickets fell at regular intervals, with Rob Nicol (32), Tim Southee (23) and Jacob Oram (27), all chipping in with useful hands, but no one going on to make a big score. Sunil Narine chipped in with 3 wickets, a welcome return to form for the young mystery spinner, while the run outs of Tom Latham and Dean Brownlie did not help the New Zealand cause.
With Ronnie Hira also incapable of batting after injuring his hand while attempting a return catch off his own bowling, the New Zealand innings ended at 153-8, with 9 balls still left.
Neither team will have much time to dwell on the result with the sides set to do battle again on Sunday afternoon in Flordia. That match will wrap up this short showcase visit to the United States with both sides then returning to the West Indies for a 5-match ODI and 2-match Test series.
West Indies 209-2 (20 overs, 10.45rpo)
C Gayle 85 (52) K Williamson 1-21
K Pollard 63 (29) D Bracewell 1-47
New Zealand 153-8 (20 overs, 7.65rpo)
R Nicol 32 (31) S Narine 3-34
J Oram 27 (13) D Sammy 2-13
West Indies win by 56 runs
File Photograph Copyright: ICC World T20
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