Let people tell you a million stories, but we’re just going to tell you one thing. This ODI series is not going to be about West Indies vs England. This 5-match ODI series in the Caribbean is going to be all about Chris Gayle. It has been 4+ years since he last payed a Test match for the national side and now close to a year since he played his last ODI. Moreover, the 39-year old announced that he will retire after the 50-over World Cup in England later this year.
The Universe Boss is now a part of the team that plays the 1st ODI against England in Barbados. Windies come into this series after having clinched an unlikely 2-1 Test series but remember, England is one of the best ODI teams in the world, having undergone a complete makeover after its debacle in the 2015 ICC World Cup. We’re looking at what should be an exciting ODI series.
- Tournament: England tour of West Indies 2019
- Date: 20th February 2019, 8:30pm IST
- Venue: Kensington Oval, Bridgetown, Barbados
- Capacity: 28,000+
- Series status: First ODI of 5-match series
- The last ODI at this ground was in March 2017 between Windies and England itself, with the latter winning by 186 runs.
- Windies have won just 1 of their last 5 ODIs at Kensington Oval.
- England have won 7 of their 12 ODIs here, enjoying a better success rate (58%) than the home team (41%).
- The highest score at this ground is recorded by England itself – 328/10 in March 2017.
- Chris Gayle enjoys a phenomenal record at this ground – 503 runs (2nd highest after Lara) in 11 games, even though his last ODI here was in 2009.
Captain Jason Holder is back for the hosts and that’s one of the biggest plus points, given how inspiring he was in the Tests, with both bat and ball. However, he’ll be having to manage without his first choice eleven, as Rovman Powell and Keemo Paul have been sidelined with injuries, while premier pacer Shannon Gabriel is out serving a suspension.
Evin Lewis was slated to be the opening batsman, but his last-minute withdrawal means John Campbell will be a part of the ODI series. He recently made his debut in the Test series and if his hard hitting at the top was anything to go by, I’d want him to be a part of my fantasy team in a format that would suit him better.
Eoin Morgan return to the side, as captain. Rusty? For sure. First game on the tour it will be for him, as with many others. However, their record at this ground and their 50-over abilities in the last few years will take them through to a win. Jason Roy and Joe Root both scored centuries in the warm-up game and both will find a way into my fantasy team for the 1st ODI. Remember, Root also got a century in the 3rd Test.
Adil Rashid will be pumped at the challenge of having to bowl to the likes of Gayle, Campbell, Hetmyer and others. However, the real challenge for the Windies batsmen comes in the form of the English pacers, with Liam Plunkett and Mark Wood both fighting for a place in the side for the 2019 WC. Wood was spitting fire in the final Test so he has found his place in my team for sure.
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— Read Scoops (@ReadScoops) February 20, 2019
My fantasy eleven
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