Stokes takes three as West Indies kept to 204

Innings break West Indies 204 for 9 (Holder 41*, Stokes 3-43) v England
Live scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Ben Stokes got the better of Marlon Samuels and England withstood an early onslaught from Chris Gayle as West Indies subsided from a lively start to limp to 204 for 9 in a match reduced to 42 overs per side.

The contest was delayed two hours when the umpires felt the outfield was too damp. As the autumnal sunshine emerged the crowd became increasingly agitated and cricket’s PR image took another hit before a 2pm inspection brought better news. By the halfway mark of the match, it was England who would have been the happier of the two sides. The wickets were shared around, Stokes finishing with 3 for 43 although he did send down two full-toss no-balls in the final over with Jason Holder’s unbeaten 41 taking West Indies over 200.

Having waited for the action, the crowd were greeted by some heavy-hitting from Gayle, playing his first ODI since the 2015 World Cup, after he was dropped third ball by Joe Root at second slip. He plundered three sixes in the first four overs, but West Indies’ rapid start was deceptive – once England adapted to a sluggish surface, which offered a hint of turn, scoring became much more difficult.

Gayle’s mobility – never great at the best of times – was hindered when he appeared to tweak something in his leg and jogged singles became walks until Root redeemed himself with a stunning catch over his shoulder, running back from cover.

Eoin Morgan’s decision to use spin in the sixth over had broken the opening stand when Evin Lewis pulled a long hop from Moeen Ali to square leg. Shai Hope struggled to get his innings going and with Gayle’s departure England regained control, the quicks making good use of changes of pace.

It took Hope and Samuels, who did not find the boundary during his 46-ball stay, 14 overs to add their 50-run stand which was broken when Hope was well caught at deep square leg by Jonny Bairstow to give Stokes his first wicket.

The one Stokes really wanted, however, came in his next over when England successfully reviewed for a glove down the leg side by Samuels after the delivery had originally been called wide. There were no fireworks when the decision was confirmed although Stokes managed a smile in the huddle and appeared to enjoy watching Samuels walk off.

Jason Mohammed and Rovman Powell managed a six apiece – Powell’s a wonderful straight drive off Plunkett – but the pair fell in consecutive overs when looking to kick on. Mohammed picked out deep midwicket off Adil Rashid and Powell sent a leading edge to mid-on.

Holder did what he could to take his side over 200 – 15 off the final over from Stokes assisting in that – but there was no sustained late charge from the lower order. Rashid finished with an impressive 2 for 31 from his nine overs and Woakes, playing his first ODI since the side strain he suffered in the Champions Trophy, claimed 2 for 41 after clawing back from Gayle’s early blows.

Source: ESPN Crickinfo

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