Four balls, four sixes!!! - Brathwaite, Samuels blast Windies to dramatic World T20 final win
KOLKATA, India (CMC):
Carlos Brathwaite belted four astonishing sixes off the first four deliveries of the final over to catapult West Indies to an extraordinary four-wicket victory over England as the Caribbean made history by sweeping both the men's and women's titles at the 2016 Twenty20 World Cup here yesterday.
With West Indies requiring a difficult 19 from the final over in pursuit of 156 for victory at Eden Gardens, the right-handed Brathwaite cleared the ropes four times in succession from seamer Ben Stokes to hand West Indies a spectacular victory with two balls to spare.
ARCHITECT OF THE VICTORY
Brathwaite finished on 34 not out from just 10 deliveries, but it was veteran right-hander Marlon Samuels who stroked an unbeaten 85 from 66 balls, who was the architect of the victory.
The languid Jamaican, adjudged Man of the Match, smashed nine fours and two sixes, anchoring two crucial stands, first with Dwayne Bravo (24) and then with Brathwaite, to pull West Indies around from 11 for three in the third over.
They lost both openers, Johnson Charles (1) and Chris Gayle (4), in the second over to off-spinner Joe Root, and when semi-final hero Lendl Simmons fell to a first ball 'duck' in the following over, the Windies were up against the ropes.
But Samuels posted 75 for the fourth wicket with Bravo, who struck a four and a six off 27 deliveries and then 54 for the seventh wicket with the outstanding Brathwaite, who counted a four and four sixes.
Earlier, Brathwaite and Bravo had also starred with the ball, taking three wickets apiece as England were restricted to 155 for nine off their 20 overs, after they were sent in.
Joe Root top-scored with 54 and Jos Buttler got 36, but Brathwaite (3-23) and Bravo (3-37), along with leg-spinner Samuel Badree (2-16), grabbed wickets at key points to cripple the England innings.
The victory ensured a sweep of both T20 World Cup titles after West Indies Women upset three-time defending champions Australia by eight wickets at the same venue earlier.
With the triumph, the men's side became the first nation to win the T20 World Cup twice, following on from their success in Sri Lanka four years ago.
CHERISH FOR LONG TIME
"I want to thank the Almighty because without Him nothing is possible. We have a pastor in the team in Andre Fletcher. He keeps on praying. We are a praying team. I'm really happy for this win and it's something we are going to cherish for a long time," an emotional captain Darren Sammy said afterwards.
"I've said before the tournament we have 15 match-winners. Nobody gave us a chance, but every game somebody stepped up and took responsibility. To see Carlos play like that in his debut World Cup, it's just tremendous.
"It shows the depth we have in the Caribbean in T20 cricket and, hopefully, with the right structure and development, our cricket will continue to improve in one-day and Test cricket."
No such success seemed on the cards when Charles holed out to Stokes, running in from deep mid-on with one run on the board, and Gayle picked out the same fielder at long-off two balls later to leave England on top.
Simmons shuffled across to left-armer David Willey and was lbw off the first ball of the next over, as West Indies' chances of victory seemed to dim.
But Samuels and Bravo came together to steady the innings in a stand that was more pragmatic than flamboyant and which guided West Indies to 54 without further loss at the halfway point of the innings.
Bravo, dropped on 11 by substitute Sam Billings off Stokes in the 13th over, recovered to belt leg-spinner Adil Rashid over midwicket for six in the next over before top-edging the final ball to Root at point at 86 for four.
Samuels, on 50 at the time, then blasted a four and two successive sixes off seamer Liam Plunkett in an over that gushed 18 runs, but England struck back to claim two wickets for just 21 runs in the space of nine balls and leave the Windies tottering on 107 for six in the 16th over.
Andre Russell picked out Stokes on the wide midwicket boundary off the first ball of the 16th over from Willey, before Sammy lofted the third delivery to deep cover, where Alex Hales held the catch.
Brathwaite joined Samuels and the pair sensibly navigating the final overs before taking eight runs from the penultimate one bowled by seamer Chris Jordan before launching the last-over assault.
J Roy b Badree 0
A Hales c Badree b Russell 1
J Root c Benn b Brathwaite 54
*E Morgan c Gayle b Badree 5
+J Buttler c Bravo b Brathwaite 36
B Stokes c Simmons b Bravo 13
M Ali c wkp Ramdin b Bravo 0
C Jordan not out 12
D Willey c Charles b Brathwaite 21
L Plunkett c Badree b Bravo 4
A Rashid not out 4
Extras (lb4, w1) 5
TOTAL (9 wkts, 20 overs) 155
Fall of wickets: 1-0 (Roy, 0.2 overs), 2-8 (Hales, 1.5), 3-23 (Morgan, 4.4), 4-84 (Buttler, 11.2), 5-110 (Stokes, 13.4), 6-110 (Ali, 14), 7-111 (Root, 14.1), 8-136 (Willey, 17.3), 9-142 (Plunkett, 18.3)
Bowling: Badree 4-1-16-2, Russell 4-0-21-1, Benn 3-0-40-0, DJ Bravo 4-0-37-3, Brathwaite 4-0-23-3 (w1), Sammy 1-0-14-0.
J Charles c Stokes b Root 1
C Gayle c Stokes b Root 4
M Samuels not out 85
L Simmons lbw b Willey 0
DJ Bravo c Root b Rashid 25
A Russell c Stokes b Willey 1
*D Sammy c Hales b Willey 2
C Brathwaite not out 34
Extras (lb3, w6) 9
TOTAL (6 wkts, 19.4 overs) 161
Did not bat: +D Ramdin, S Badree, S Benn
Fall of wickets: 1-1 (Charles, 1.1 overs), 2-5 (Gayle, 1.3), 3-11 (Simmons, 2.3), 4-86 (Bravo, 14), 5-104 (Russell, 15.1), 6-107 (Sammy, 15.3)
Bowling: Willey 4-0-20-3 (w2), Root 1-0-9-2, Jordan 4-0-36-0 (w1), Plunkett 4-0-29-0 (w1), Rashid 4-0-23-1, Stokes 2.4-0-41-0 (w2).
Result: West Indies won by four wickets.
Series: West Indies win Twenty20 World Cup.
Man-of-the-Match: Marlon Samuels.
Man-of-the-Series: Virat Kohli.
Toss: West Indies.
Umpires: K Dharmasena, R Tucker; TV M Erasmus