England clinched the first of five one-day internationals against the Windies by six wickets before the hosts hit back with a 26-run victory in the second. The teams will go into the third ODI in Grenada with dogged intent to gain the upper hand in the series.
Windies v England
National Cricket Stadium, Grenada
9:30am local time, 1:30pm GMT
ICYMI: Shimron Hetmyer's brisk 104* and a five-wicket haul from Sheldon Cottrell powered Windies to a series-levelling win over England in Barbados.#WIvENG REPORT ⬇️https://t.co/cs4u6P0zq5 pic.twitter.com/zcWSmMlBYt— ICC (@ICC) February 23, 2019
Both teams looked impressive with the bat in the first game, as 724 runs were tallied on the day. However, the bowlers pulled up their socks in the second ODI, claiming 16 wickets between them: while England restricted the Windies to 289/6, the hosts bundled them out for 263.
The teams will look to strike balance between bat and ball going into the third game, as the focus shifts from Barbados to Grenada. Chris Gayle and Shimron Hetmyer have been in good form for the hosts, recording a century each. The Windies will hope that the duo continues to rack up the numbers, while expecting the rest of the line-up to join the party.
Sheldon Cottrell, who returned 5/46 in the second ODI, will once again spearhead the pace battery in the absence of the injured Kemar Roach. Jason Holder, the Windies skipper, has claimed five scalps the series so far. However, he has been ineffective with the bat and will want to change that in the remainder of the games.
England will rely on their swashbuckling batting order to pile up the runs. Jason Roy, Jonny Bairstow, Joe Root, Eoin Morgan, Ben Stokes and Jos Buttler are all match-winners in white-ball cricket on their day.
All-rounders like Tom Curran, Chris Woakes, Moeen Ali and Adil Rashid will want to up their game to make their case for selection for the ICC Men's Cricket World Cup 2019. Pacers Liam Plunkett and Mark Wood have had relatively underwhelming performances so far, and will be keen to grab their chances.
England were sharp on the field in the second ODI, where they curtailed the scoring rate with two sensational run-outs. They will want to maintain that efficiency through the rest of the series.
What an incredible victory for England!— ICC (@ICC) February 20, 2019
They've chased down 361 – it's England's highest successful run-chase in ODI cricket! Jason Roy and Joe Root have led the way with centuries to help England go 1-0 up in the series. #WIvENG | SCORECARD ⬇️
Chris Gayle (Windies): Gayle, who has announced he will retire from ODIs post CWC 2019, has been in brilliant form in the series. He smashed a 135 in the opening game before following it up with a 50 in the second. The left-hander believes this might be his last series before the home crowd, and that seems to have added intent to his approach.
Eoin Morgan (England): The England skipper has been consistent, adding scores of 65 and 70 in the first two games. Morgan has crossed 50 nine times over the last 12 months, but has been unable to get to three figures. He will be keen to convert these half-centuries into a big, match-winning knock.
The forecast predicts showers in the initial stages of the game. With the average first innings score at the National Cricket Stadium being 237, the strip in Grenada is not an out-and-out batting paradise. The cloudy conditions might assist the faster bowlers.
Windies: Jason Holder (c), Shai Hope (wk), Chris Gayle, John Campbell, Darren Bravo, Shimron Hetmyer, Carlos Brathwaite, Ashley Nurse, Devendra Bishoo, Sheldon Cottrell, Oshane Thomas, Nicholas Pooran, Fabian Allen
England: Eoin Morgan (c), Jos Buttler (wk), Jason Roy, Jonny Bairstow, Joe Root, Ben Stokes, Moeen Ali, Tom Curran, Adil Rashid, Liam Plunkett, Mark Wood, Alex Hales, Joe Denly, Chris Woakes, David Willey
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