Fri | Nov 26, 2021

Gayle leads West Indies to commanding T20 series win over Australia

Published:Monday | July 12, 2021 | 10:25 PMLennox Aldred/Gleaner Writer -
West Indies batsman Chris Gayle on his way to a milestone 14,000 Twenty20 (T20) International runs. He achieved the feat in the third T20 match of the five-game series against Australia in Gros Islet, St Lucia on Monday.
West Indies batsman Chris Gayle on his way to a milestone 14,000 Twenty20 (T20) International runs. He achieved the feat in the third T20 match of the five-game series against Australia in Gros Islet, St Lucia on Monday.

With his back against the wall, Chris Gayle showed why he is the 'Universe Boss' as he played an out of this world innings to help guide the West Indies to a six-wicket win over Australia to claim an unassailable 3-0 lead in the five-match Twenty20 (T20) International series on Monday evening.

Gayle smashed 67 runs from 38 balls to set up the West Indies run chase which eventually got to 142 for four in 14 overs and five deliveries, chasing 141 made by the visitors.

The left-hander rekindled his usually aggressive form by hitting four fours and seven towering sixes in the swashbuckling innings and the process passed 14,000 T20 runs.

Stand-in captain Nicholas Pooran got an unbeaten 32 from 27 balls, including the winning four which sealed the series for the home side.

He and Gayle shared in a 67 run third-wicket stand which was the icing on the cake despite rookie pacer Riley Meredith bagging three wickets for 48 runs.

Earlier, leg-spinner Hayden Walsh Jr put in another good shift with the ball by bagging two wickets to stifle the Australian innings.

Walsh sent back captain Aaron Finch for 30 and Alex Carey for 13, as the Aussies once again stuttered in the middle overs.

Moises Henriques, with 33, and Ashton Turner, 24, tried to spruce up the innings, but Dwayne Bravo was involved in the fall of both wickets, as the visitors crawled to just 141 for the loss of six wickets.

Man of the match Gayle said the inspiration from his teammates allowed him to perform and get to the milestone.

"From a personal point of view, I was struggling with the bat and to be able to get some runs today is very pleasing,” he said. “I want to dedicate this half-century and milestone to my teammates, especially Kieron Pollard. We had a team meeting before the game and he stood tall, and that's what a leader should do. He said he was behind me all the way and he wanted me to go out and express myself.”

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