West Indies v Pakistan, 1st ODI, Gros Islet April 23, 2011

Pakistan's batsmen seal the job started by spinners


Pakistan 222 for 2 (Misbah 73*, Shafiq 61*, Hafeez 54, Bishoo 2-48) beat West Indies 221 for 6 (Bravo 67, Sammy 29*, Ajmal 1-24, Hafeez 1-36) by 8 wickets
Live scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Pakistan strolled to victory in the first one-day international against West Indies at the Beausejour Stadium in St Lucia, Mohammad Hafeez, Misbah-ul-Haq and Asad Shafiq all contributing half-centuries as West Indies' score of 221 for 6 was overhauled with more than eight overs to spare.

It appeared West Indies had a fighting chance of continuing the success of the opening Twenty20 of the tour after Darren Bravo's 67 helped them to a workable total and legspinner Devendra Bishoo struck twice in quick succession to reduce Pakistan to 88 for 2. Bishoo had precious little support from the rest of the bowling attack, however, and Misbah and Shafiq put together an unbroken partnership of 134 for the third wicket to steer Pakistan home.

This match had been billed as a chance for West Indies to get revenge for their World Cup humiliation by Pakistan, but in the end it was more like a replay. Even the Man of the Match, Hafeez, was the same and West Indies' greatest errors stemmed from their misreading of the pitch for today's game - an unforgivable error as they should have known what to expect after the Twenty20, which was also played at Gros Islet.

It had been thought the pitch would be slow, and it was, but it also offered turn and bounce to the spinners. Shahid Afridi, Saeed Ajmal and Hafeez bowled a combined 30 overs for just 100 runs, picking up two wickets, but Bishoo was the only slow bowler in an unbalanced seam-heavy attack as Devon Smith bowled two ineffectual overs of offspin and Marlon Samuel's respectable offerings weren't called upon.

West Indies were left chasing the game almost from the start as, reprising his World Cup role, Hafeez was brought on early and soon dealt with Smith while Ajmal toyed with Lendl Simmons before sending down a doosra that the batsman feathered through to the keeper to give a sluggish start an even more sombre tone.

Samuels maintained his trademark ice cool composure and exhibited his best poker face but fell to some indecisive running and it was left to Darren Bravo and Kirk Edwards to get an increasingly rudderless innings back on track. They gritted out a fourth-wicket partnership worth 59, replete with snappy singles and dinks into the outfield, that carried West Indies to 135 before Edwards tried to break the shackles with a heave into the deep that could only get as far as Junaid Khan at deep midwicket.

That brought Darren's half-brother Dwayne to the crease, and it was in his company that he reached a boundary-free half-century from 97 balls. The brothers Bravo continued to push the ones and twos wherever possible, and when the Batting Powerplay was called for at the start of the 43rd over Darren took it as his cue to take the attack to Pakistan's seamers.

With much of the boundary unprotected, Dwayne Bravo attempted to follow Darren's lead but his charge came to a premature end when he chipped a Riaz full toss towards mid-off, where Afridi skipped to his right and bent low to hold the catch inches from the turf.

Sammy's walk to the crease was accompanied by a warm reception from a middling crowd - St Lucia being his home island - but they were soon hushed into silence by another piece of inept running. Bravo dug a free hit towards deep mid-off and Sammy cajoled him into a second run that was never there, the result being that the set batsman was run out for 67 just as he began to accelerate and West Indies faced the final five overs of the innings with two brand new batsmen at the crease.

While Ajmal continued to weave mysteries around the batsmen until the very end, Sammy took the dismissal in his stride and responded with a flurry of boundaries - including a memorably monstrous six that landed on the roof of the stands on the western side of the ground - and together with an energetic Carlton Baugh boosted West Indies' total at the death.

It was soon made to look nowhere near enough, however, as Hafeez and Ahmed Shehzad put on an untroubled 68 for the first wicket at close to a-run-a-ball before Bishoo's intervention. Hafeez had set about Pakistan's chase with alacrity from the start, displacing a silken touch on both sides of the wicket as he raced to 20 from just 10 balls without a slog in sight and taking full advantage as a swirling top-edge evaded Kemar Roach, running in from long leg.

After a slow start his opening partner, Shehzad, started to catch up with three classy boundaries from one Roach over and with Pakistan soon racing along at better than a-run-a-ball West Indies began to wilt visibly in the field.

Bishoo's introduction quickly changed that, however, as he gave away just one run from his first nine deliveries and then lured Shehzad forward with a looping, dipping legbreak that fizzed past the outside edge for wicketkeeper Carlton Baugh to complete a smart stumping with the batsman's back foot in the air. Hafeez went to his fifty with a slog sweep over deep backward square off Bishoo, but was then undone by what appeared to be a wrong 'un as, cramped for room, he clipped straight to a diving short midwicket.

The wickets reduced Pakistan to 88 for 2 and brought West Indies back into the game, but with the seam attack unable to contain the batsmen and spin support for Bishoo unavailable Misbah and Shafiq soon settled. Both played with increasingly imperious confidence, Misbah raising a 63-ball fifty in the 35th over and Shafiq following suit four overs later. West Indies' demise thereafter was swift, and they will have to improve in all areas if they are to square the series in the second match at the same ground on Monday.

Liam Brickhill is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Hildreth on April 25, 2011, 2:17 GMT

    The West Indies on-field selectors (Capt Sammy and Coach Gibson included) have missed the plot yet again. In the T20 match on Thursday they played one spinner in Bishoo who took 4 wickets whilst Pakistan played 4 spinners who mesmerized all the WI batsmen except Simmons and Bravo. Wasn't that a good enough indication of the type of pitch to play 2 spinners (Bishoo and Martin) inthe first ODI ? What was there to lose in playing Martin who was among the best performers in the last regional ODI tour instead of 4 seamers in Roach, Russell, Bravo and Sammy? Two days ago they failed to expose Santokie in the T20 when he had only been selected for that match. Also I was surprised that Simmons and Bravo batted so cautiously compared to the T20. That killed their game because they are naturally agressive batsmen. It's not clear whether this was the instruction from the coach but he should allow these stroke makers to play their natural game. The other batsmen could consolidate if one gets out.

  • Basil on April 24, 2011, 22:44 GMT

    WI plays too many bits and pieces players in one team. Genuine allrounders are rare but guys that can bowl a bit and bat a bit are plentiful. You can't play both Russel and Sammy in the same team. Only room for one, and the other spot SHOULD be taken by a frontline quick - Taylor, Fidel etc. On a general pitch WI should have 5 batsmen, 1 good wk-batsman, 1 batting allrounder, 1 bowling allrounder, 1 spinner, 2 frontline quicks. The team looks unbalanced at the moment but as they select correctly the sooner as they'll start winning games. Aus, SAf, Ind, if they chose teams like the WI they wouldn't win a game often either.

  • quigley on April 24, 2011, 19:48 GMT

    ha brothers before we start taking these young boys apart let us give them a chance to learn the craft. remember last year Austrial and South Africa beat us 5 -0 so the out come is not different but we are seeing a new generation of cricketers who we hope will perform. Gale scored 100 in the IPL but what did he give us in the world cup. these guys have failed us for the past 10 years. Gale, Sawn are in their 30s they should be at their best now scoring runs using their experience and talent. but i notice their talent has not improve and their experience is poor. Summy must start scoring runs, his wicket colum is empty this days so he mus help his team. we will not be beaten 5 -0 with these young guys we will do better. i would include sawan for the other 3 ODIs but shan. will have to wait for the test. the years are having an effect on him and so let us protect him for the test marches. what is going on with Baret this guy need a new body more mucles.

  • Ahmed on April 24, 2011, 19:15 GMT

    Let me see what " cric_fanatics " has said!!!

  • AbdulRehman on April 24, 2011, 18:39 GMT

    @cric fanatics-Try to live in the present and use past as a lesson.Aussies have been a great team but now is Pakistan,s time.If you want to rule the world of cricket then try to act like a sportsman.Try to digest the figures that now pakistan are continuously beating Australia.They have been beaten by Pakistan in England,India in India and SriLanka in Australia.Your time is over.

  • big on April 24, 2011, 18:18 GMT

    So WI fans, have you braced yourselves for more licks on Monday and throughout the series? Or do you think we will witness a resurrection of sorts? A resurrection of winning ways, maybe? Well I can dream, right? And while I'm dreaming, I'll dream of a resurrection of Chanderpaul in the test matches! And of this series being the one where Darren Bravo, Kemar Roach and Bishoo comes of age. Maybe Barath if he's fit for the test matches. Maybe Simmons will fulfill the expectations. Or maybe I should just stop dreaming and wake up to the reality of administrators and a players' association that disagree so much they've forgotten what's important. And the young generation of the WI public that no longer holds cricket dear to their hearts.

  • Dummy4 on April 24, 2011, 18:17 GMT

    how the hell Misbah-ul-Haq score now ...... shame on you mishab for semi final ...

  • Finn on April 24, 2011, 16:31 GMT

    I think with Hafeez's bowling getting better with every game, Pakistan could maybe afford to play another seamer if conditions are right, he's a hell of a lot better than Rehman. And I bet Afridi is hoping Misbah decides to play for another couple of years as he's in the form of his life!

  • Abrar on April 24, 2011, 16:09 GMT

    @ cric_fanatics you for get to check the situation that is now 4-0 ? Pakistan won 4 consecutive matches against Aus in all three formats...

  • Professor on April 24, 2011, 14:56 GMT

    Ainsley van Hal,... Brian Lara is clearly the best batsman against spin bowlers. Just ask Murali and Warne. He should be made batting coach or batting consultant to the West Indies team. Then certainly, the batsmen will learn to come out on the front foot and stop staying back in the crease to the spinners.No one in the team took the attack to the spinners. They all played them out in fear and calm.Come on players, go the archives and dig up some old videos of Lara and Hooper batting the great spinners of the world. You will learn some valuable lessons!

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