Joe Root’s golden arm got rid of Johnson Charles and Chris Gayle early in the run chase © Associated Press
In the semi-final, Jason Roy was bowled by a legspinner who skidded the ball on. In the final, Roy was bowled by a legspinner who skidded the ball on. But there was one key difference. In the semi-final, Roy had already thumped 78 off 44 balls when he fell to Ish Sodhi, and had done enough to set up England’s win over New Zealand. In the final, his dismissal came off the second ball of the match, Samuel Badree having already had a big shout for lbw first ball when Roy missed another skidder. It was the start of a tough period of play for England.
It seemed that Badree could do no wrong. He bowled his four overs in succession and finished with 2 for 16, including 14 dot balls. He also took a catch in the second over of the innings to remove Alex Hales, who had flicked Andre Russell to short fine leg. And another, better catch came in the 19th over when Liam Plunkett sliced the ball to short third man off Dwayne Bravo. Badree had to hustle to his right and dive to make the catch, which stuck perfectly in his hands, but he came up clutching his right shoulder. Badree left the field immediately and it was a worrying sign, though it would have been more so for West Indies had he not already bowled out.
West Indies have had great success with Badree as an opening bowler, but England throughout this tournament have opted for the more traditional approach of two fast bowlers taking the new ball. Until today. Eoin Morgan asked Joe Root to send down the second over of West Indies’ innings after David Willey had started proceedings, and it quickly appeared to be a stroke of genius. First ball, Johnson Charles launched an ugly slog off Root that was caught by Ben Stokes running back from mid-on, and two balls later Root had Chris Gayle in similar fashion. It was all the more remarkable for the fact that before this, Root’s tournament bowling figures were 1-0-13-0.
After their shaky start, West Indies had picked themselves back up with 16 runs off the sixth over from Chris Jordan, but the first ball of the next over brought more joy for England. Briefly. The scorecard ticked over to 37 for 4 when Marlon Samuels edged behind off Liam Plunkett and was given out by umpire Rod Tucker. However, the decision was then sent upstairs for analysis by third official Marais Erasmus, with some doubt whether the ball carried to Jos Buttler. Replays suggested it had touched the ground as it entered his gloves, and Samuels, on 27, was reprieved. The scorecard duly ticked back to 37 for 3.
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Source: ESPN Crickinfo