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Wednesday, Feb 26th

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You are here: Cricket T20 Internationals Gayle, Sammy script thrilling West Indies win

Gayle, Sammy script thrilling West Indies win

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West Indies beat Australia by six wickets with two balls to spare in a thrilling encounter in Dhaka today in the ICC World Twenty20 match. George Bailey won the toss and opted to bat with Australia posting 178-8 in their 20 overs. Glenn Maxwell (45) and Brad Hodge (35) were the top run scorers for the Aussies.

In response, Chris Gayle got the Windies off to a flyer before he was dismissed by James Muirhead for 53 runs off 35 balls at strike rate of 151 and included six fours and two big sixes. He added 50 for the first wicket with Dwayne Smith (17) and another 51 for the second wicket with Lendl Simmons (26). Australia put the pressure on in the middle overs to up the required run rate but Darren Sammy, 34 from just 13 balls, was too strong at the death getting the West Indies home with two balls to spare.

The Windies skipper came to the crease with the asking rate of 14 runs per over and blasted a career-best 34 – with two fours and three sixes. It was a superb display of power-hitting from Sammy, though Mitchell Starc and James Faulkner didn't exactly cover themselves in glory by bowling a lot of balls in his hitting arc. The penultimate over from Starc was the crucial one in the end, and after Sammy hammered the left-arm fast bowler, West Indies needed just 12 to win from the last over.

James Faulkner to his credit bowled two perfect deliveries to start the over, pushing the requirement up to 12 from 4 balls and putting the pressure right back on Sammy, but the Windies skipper hit consecutive sixes to end the contest as a delighted West Indies dugout invaded the field and celebrated like they had won the tournament itself.

The result means that barring a miracle, Australia have a negligible chance of making the semi-final stage of the competition, while the West Indies moved to the top of the table in Pool A for a few hours at the very least with 2 wins from 3 games. Australia still have two games to play against India and Bangladesh, but wins in both those encounters is unlikely to be enough to help them qualify for the semi-finals unless some shock results produce themselves over the coming days.

Mini Scorecard:

Australia 178/8 (20 overs, 8.9rpo)

G Maxwell 45 (22) S Narine 2-19 (4)

B Hodge 35 (26) M Samuels 2-20 (2)

West Indies 179/4 (19.4 overs, 9.10rpo)

C Gayle 53 (35) M Starc 2-50 (4)

D Sammy 34* (13) J Muirhead 1-21 (3)

West Indies win by 6 wickets