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regular-article-logo Tuesday, 05 March 2024

West Indies vs England: Shai Hope invokes Mahendra Singh Dhoni's mantra to finish chase

Hope’s unbeaten century and Romario Shepherd’s speedy 48 powered West Indies to a four-wicket victory

Our Bureau North Sound Published 05.12.23, 07:59 AM
Centurion Shai Hope after hitting the winning runs on Sunday.

Centurion Shai Hope after hitting the winning runs on Sunday. Getty Images

Shai Hope played the knight in the West Indies’ chase of a 326-run target against England in the first ODI between the two teams on Sunday. And for finishing the job, Hope chanted the mantra that master finisher Mahendra Singh Dhoni gave him.

Hope’s unbeaten century and Romario Shepherd’s speedy 48 powered the West Indies to a four-wicket victory, while England’s hopes of rebuilding after their disastrous World Cup campaign got off to a false start in Antigua.

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England were impressive with the bat, putting up 325 all out in 50 overs at Sir Vivian Richards Stadium, but captain Jos Buttler made his fifth single-figure score in eight ODIs after being dismissed for three off 13 balls.

The total looked out of the Windies’ reach as they were reduced to 213/5 in the 39th over, but Hope’s 109 not out off 83 balls and Shepherd’s 28-ball 48 saw the home team breach the target in 48.5 overs.

Hope’s three sixes in four balls off the expensive Sam Curran, who cost 98 in 9.5 wicketless overs, helped the Windies get over the line.

How did Hope plan his innings? “A very, very famous person, MS Dhoni — we had a chat a while ago, and he was saying, ‘You always have a lot more time than you think’,” Hope said at the post-match presentation.

“That’s one thing that has stuck with me throughout the years I’ve been playing ODI cricket,” Hope added.

The effort also saw the Windies record their seco­nd-highest successful ODI chase.

What about England? Th­eir positives included Harry Brook’s 71 off 72 balls and op­ener Phil Salt’s 45 off 28.

Captain Buttler enjoyed the “fantastic game” but also noted that there were things where they needed improvement. “A fantastic game of cricket... Credit to Shai Hope. We asked a lot of questions and they played really well at the back end to chase those down. Thought it was fantastic batting effort (from us). Some things we can do better
moving on to the next one,” Buttler said.

Brief scores: England 325 in 50 ovs (H. Brook 71, Z. Crawley 48; G. Motie 2/49) West Indies 326/6 in 48.5 ovs (S. Hope 109 n.o., A. Athanaze 66; R. Ahmed 2/40) West Indies won by 4 wkts

With inputs from AP/PTI

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