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IRE-W vs THAI-W (1)
RESULT
5th T20I (D/N), Tarouba, December 21, 2023, England tour of West Indies
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(19.2/20 ov, T:133) 133/6

West Indies won by 4 wickets (with 4 balls remaining)

Report

Hope six seals 3-2 win for WI after Motie keeps lid on England

Something brewing in the Caribbean as Windies win third T20I series under Rovman Powell's captaincy

Matt Roller
Matt Roller
21-Dec-2023
Shai Hope finished the game with a six  •  Associated Press

Shai Hope finished the game with a six  •  Associated Press

West Indies 133 for 6 (Hope 43*, Rutherford 30) beat England 132 (Salt 38, Motie 3-24) by four wickets
The final game of England's tour ended much like the first: with Shai Hope clinching victory for West Indies with a match-winning six. His unbeaten, run-a-ball 43 was the highest score of a tense low-scorer in Tarouba, and his clean strike over cover off Chris Woakes sealed the series decider with four balls remaining.
Something is brewing in the Caribbean. Since their ignominious first-round exit at last year's T20 World Cup in Australia, West Indies have won three T20I series out of three under Rovman Powell's captaincy. In August, they beat India 3-2 in Daren Sammy's first T20I series as white-ball coach; in December, they beat the defending world champions by the same margin.
This finale was played on the same strip at Trinidad's Brian Lara Cricket Academy as the one used in England's 75-run win 48 hours previously, but the games could hardly have been more different: after 459 runs in 35.3 overs on Tuesday evening, Thursday's game saw just 265 in 38.5, culminating in a scrap for the finish line.
In pursuit of 133, Hope soaked up 31 balls for his first 23 runs before finally shifting up a gear when he squeezed Rehan Ahmed away for his first boundary. West Indies made things difficult for themselves, but England's late collapse after being sent in - they lost their last six wickets for just 22 runs - proved decisive. They will fly home empty-handed on Friday, after losing both the ODI and T20I legs of this tour.

A pinch of Salt


Phil Salt hit centuries in both the third and fourth games of this series, and looked in pristine touch in the Powerplay. Oshane Thomas, who replaced Matthew Forde for West Indies, saw his first ball of the night crunched through the covers, then conceded back-to-back boundaries in his second over: the first through point, the second straight back down the ground.
Jos Buttler fell early, scooping Jason Holder to short fine leg for 11 in the fourth over, while Will Jacks' innings summed up his series: a glimmer of promise, crunching Akeal Hosein over long-on for a straight six, then brought back down to earth when cramped for room by an arm ball which scuttled into his stumps.
By the time Salt launched Gudakesh Motie over long-off for six to take England to 60 for 2 after three balls of the seventh over, he had broken Mohammad Rizwan's record for the most runs in a men's bilateral T20I series. But he fell to the next one he faced, which angled in then spun past his outside edge - a sign of what was to come through the middle overs.

Spin smothers England


Buttler bemoaned the time it took England to realise that this was not the belter of two nights previously, which allowed Motie and Hosein to thrive. Harry Brook fell to his sixth ball, gloving Motie behind as he shaped to scoop; only once more, when Moeen Ali dragged one over midwicket, did he concede a boundary.
Moeen fell for 23 to an excellent relay catch between Andre Russell and Powell at long-on and long-off, having added 40 in 6.2 overs for the fifth wicket. Liam Livingstone hit two towering leg-side sixes - one off Thomas, the other off Holder - but chipped a catch back to Motie to give him his third wicket.
England's lower order offered little resistance: Russell cleaned Chris Woakes up with an inch-perfect yorker, then reacted quickly to take a fine catch off his own bowling when Rehan hit a full toss back at him. Adil Rashid ran himself out while getting Curran back on strike, but Curran could only pick out long-on. From 267 for 3, England were bowled out for just 132.

Hope drops anchor


Johnson Charles, replacing Kyle Mayers at the top of the order, made an early dent in the target, swinging Woakes over square leg for six before steering him away through point. But England's bowlers picked up the early wickets they craved: Brandon King swung Reece Topley straight to mid-on, and Nicholas Pooran chopped Woakes onto his own stumps.
England tried to replicate West Indies' spin squeeze, and Rashid - celebrating his ascent to the top of the ICC's rankings in this format - struck in his first over. The breakthrough came thanks to the worst ball he bowled, a loopy full toss outside off stump that Charles slapped straight to short cover.
Sherfane Rutherford provided a vital cameo of 30 off 21 balls, slugging Rashid down the ground for six and pulling Curran over long leg, as Hope steadied the ship from the other end. They added 41 off 38 balls for the fourth wicket before Rutherford crunched Rashid's googly to Curran at short extra cover, breaking the game back open.
As the game went deep, the chase became frantic. Powell dumped Rehan down the ground for six to take the required rate below six but then steered Topley to short third, and Russell swung like a rusty gate before heaving Curran's full toss down long-on's throat as West Indies managed one run off the first five balls of the 19th over.
Holder was nearly run out off the final ball of the over, but Curran's close-range attempt to deflect Rashid's throw onto the stumps went wide. When Holder's inside-edge off Woakes' first ball of the 20th left six required off five balls, Hope decided to finish it with a single blow: he crashed Woakes over the off side, prompting celebrations that would continue long into the night.

Matt Roller is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. @mroller98

Language
English
Win Probability
WI 100%
ENGWI
100%50%100%ENG InningsWI Innings

Over 20 • WI 133/6

West Indies won by 4 wickets (with 4 balls remaining)
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