Eng­land win the ODI se­ries against the West Indies

The Cricket Paper - - NEWS - By Chris Stocks

YOU HAVE got to feel for Evin Lewis. The West Indies opener hit a ca­reer-best 176 be­fore be­ing forced to re­tire hurt fol­low­ing a freak in­jury and then saw his team de­nied vic­tory in im­prob­a­ble cir­cum­stances thanks to the Duck­worth-Lewis cal­cu­la­tions.

Lewis had treated Eng­land’s bowl­ing with dis­dain in this fourth ODI as he blazed his way through a 130-ball in­nings that in­cluded 17 fours and seven sixes.

But af­ter de­flect­ing a de­liv­ery from Jake Ball onto his an­kle dur­ing the 47th over, the 25-yearold left-han­der re­ceived lengthy treat­ment be­fore he was stretchered off to rap­tur­ous ap­plause from an ap­pre­cia­tive ca­pac­ity crowd at the Oval.

He will now miss today’s fi­nal match of the se­ries in Southamp­ton af­ter X-rays re­vealed a hair­line frac­ture.

No bats­man has ever re­tired hurt on a higher score in in­ter­na­tional cricket. But de­spite miss­ing out on be­com­ing the first player to hit an ODI dou­ble hun­dred in this coun­try, Lewis’ knock helped West Indies set Eng­land an im­pos­ing tar­get of 357.

No side has chased down more in an ODI on this ground. In­deed, it would have been the third­high­est suc­cess­ful chase in the his­tory of one-day in­ter­na­tional cricket.

Yet Eng­land some­how ended up win­ning this match to take an unas­sail­able 3-0 se­ries lead de­spite a ca­reer-best five-wicket haul from 20-year-old seamer Alzarri Joseph that left them reel­ing on 181-5 in the 28th over, de­spite a re­turn to form for Ja­son Roy, who struck 84 from 66 balls on re­plac­ing Alex Hales at the top of the or­der.

At that stage, with rain fore­cast im­mi­nently, Eoin Mor­gan’s side – also miss­ing Ben Stokes af­ter his brush with the law in Bris­tol – were 51 runs be­hind the DL par score.

How­ever, an­other vir­tu­oso bat­ting dis­play from Moeen Ali, four days af­ter his 53-ball cen­tury in the third ODI, turned this con­test around to en­sure that when the rain did start fall­ing af­ter 35.1 overs Eng­land were six runs ahead of the re­quired DL tar­get.

Moeen struck 48 from 25 balls dur­ing a bril­liant stand of 77 in eight overs along­side Jos But­tler to sneak the hosts home.

It was tough on West Indies, who had the game’s two most out­stand­ing per­form­ers and might have gone on to win if they had been able to prise apart Eng­land’s sixth-wicket pair.

The tourists will also be with­out cap­tain Ja­son Holder for the fi­nal ODI af­ter re­turn­ing home to Bar­ba­dos to at­tend the fu­neral of his un­cle.

“It’s re­ally hard to take,” Holder said af­ter­wards. “Had the rain not come, we were back­ing our­selves to win it. It’s hard when a guy scores 170 and an­other guy takes five wick­ets, and you end up los­ing the game.”

star man

EVIN LEWIS – West Indies: Even though he fin­ished on the los­ing side, the Windies opener bat­ted supremely be­fore re­tir­ing hurt

PIC­TURE: Getty Im­ages

Up and over: West Indies opener Evin Lewis smashes one of seven sixes on his way to 176

Fine fifty: Ja­son Roy

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