England Beat West Indies To Set Up T20 Series Decider

(AFP) — Phil Salt smashed a superb 119 from just 57 balls as England beat West Indies by 75 runs to level their Twenty20 international series 2-2 and set up a decider on Thursday.

Led by Salt’s aggressive stroke play and swift half-centuries from skipper Jos Buttler and Liam Livingstone, England made 267 for three in their 20 overs at the Brian Lara Academy.

England’s tally was second-highest innings score in a match between full member nations and although West Indies made a fast-scoring start they rapidly lost wickets and ended up bowled out for 192 in 15.3 overs.

Salt had hit an unbeaten ton in England’s victory in Grenada on Saturday and carried on where he left off, taking the attack to the hosts from the outset in emphatic fashion after England were put in.

Salt put on 117 in the opening partnership with skipper Jos Buttler before the latter was removed for 55 when he was caught in the deep by West Indies captain Rovman Powell off Jason Holder.

Will Jacks helped maintain the momentum with 24 from nine balls as part of a rapid 56-run partnership and Liam Livingstone ensured the run-rate never faded with 54 from 21 balls.

Salt was finally bowled by Andre Russell in the penultimate over after striking ten sixes and seven fours in his entertaining innings.

The West Indies reply started badly with Brandon King removed with the first ball of the innings, edging to Reece Topley at short third man off Moeen Ali.

But Nicholas Pooran came in and hammered 20 off the rest of Ali’s opening over as the home side showed they were ready for the daunting chase.

The runs were flowing but Kyle Mayers was caught by Chris Woakes, at the second attempt, after looping a mis-timed drive off Topley high to mid-on.

Shai Hope went for 16 after he top-edged Woakes to the grateful Salt behind the stumps leaving West Indies at 78-4 in the sixth over.

Andre Russell offered a reminder of his power with five sixes in his 51 off 25 balls but the wickets kept on falling and England wrapped up the win when Russell was caught by Harry Brook off Topley.