Windies win in style over fighting Bangladesh
West Indies won their first Twenty20 international since winning the
World T20, with Marlon Samuels playing an innings reminiscent of his
assault on the Sri Lankan bowlers in the final of that tournament in
Colombo. He smashed nine sixes in an innings full of confidence and
clinical brutality, striking the ball clean and flat to dominate a
Bangladesh attack that was on a high after picking up two early wickets.
His gear-shift at the death proved pivotal in the end, as Bangladesh,
despite losing just a wicket in the chase, fell 18 short of their
target. It is the first instance of a team losing just one wicket in a
completed second innings in a Twenty20 international, and also being
Darren Bravo and Samuels didnít restrain themselves after Chris Gayle
and Dwayne Smith fell early, with Bravo signalling his intentions right
from his first ball that was driven imperiously through extra cover.
He then slashed Shafiul Islam through point, before taking on
Bangladeshís spinners. He stepped out to Abdur Razzak, smacking him for
two fours and a six and dispatched Mahmudullahís first delivery over
Samuels was let off twice by Mushfiqur Rahim, as he tried to open the
face against the seamers, one a thick outside edge that was more a
half-chance. He played the supporting role to Bravo in a stand of 66 in
seven overs and dominated the innings once the pair was separated by a
stumping. Sohag Gazi, the offspinner, dismissed Bravo but didnít have a
debut matching his maiden performances in Tests and ODIs. Kieron Pollard
attacked him, launching him for two sixes in an expensive spell, before
Samuels made the rest of the innings his own.
Samuels was a picture of absolute assuredness, he picked the gaps at
will and was ruthless, silencing a crowd of nearly 19,000 at the Shere
Bangla Stadium. He was batting on 27 off 24 at one stage and stepped up
to hammer another 58 off just 19.