DHAKA, Bangladesh -- World Champions West Indies took a giant step towards retaining their title when their beat Pakistan on Tuesday night to reach the semi-finals of ICC World T20 2014.
Dwayne Bravo led the charge with a brilliant Man of the Match performance as the Windies made 166-6 off their 20 overs. They then bowled out the Pakistanis for just 82 to win by 84 runs – their biggest margin of victory in a T20 International.
West Indies will meet Sri Lanka in the semi-finals on Thursday night. First ball is 7pm (9am Eastern Caribbean Time/8am Jamaica Time).
Bravo led an onslaught which fetched a whopping 82 runs in the last five overs. He blasted 46 off 26 balls with four massive sixes. He was involved in a whirlwind partnership with skipper Darren Sammy, who ended 42 not out – his career-best score. Sammy has now scored 101 runs in this tournament at a strike rate of 224.
After the batting heroics, Krishmar Santokie took a wicket with the first ball as the Windies bowlers dominated. Spinners Samuel Badree (4-0-10-3) and Sunil Narine (4-0-16-3) were brilliant while keeper Denesh Ramdin had a record four stumpings.
“We were slow at the start and we lost some key wicket. Our aim was to get at least 135 to 140 with the start we got, but the self-belief we have, the form and the power we have, the momentum went with us, and we finished positively,” Bravo said after accepting his Man-of-the-Match award.
“We are powerful enough if we get close to the ball to hit it over the ropes. In those situations, the best of them all go for runs. We had nothing to lose, we were under pressure. So I said to Sammy, as long as we stay still, don't worry about picking or trying to rotate, just stay still, keep your eyes on it and hit it.”
This was Bravo’s second Man-of-the-Match award in an ICC World T20 match. His first ward came back in 2009 at Lord’s when he made a career-best 66 not out and took four wickets as West Indies beat India. The 30-year-old noted that his vast experience in this format and self-belief helped him while in the middle.
“If you take the game right down to the end, anything is possible, as long as we don’t give up and keep faith and have that self-belief that if we bat 20 overs, we’re going to get a decent total. But we have to bat 20 overs, so at no point did we let what happened in the middle overs get the better of us. That comes with experience and self-belief,” the Windies Number 3 added.
“It’s good we did not panic. We showed in the Australia game what the difference can be as long as we have clean hitters at the wicket, so that’s our aim, that's our strong point and we use it to the best of our ability.”
Bravo also praised his team-mates for their tenacity and professionalism during the tournament so far.
“It is important that we leave our legacy as players, not only West Indian players but cricketers. We have young kids looking up to us. West Indies is a team that you should try not to upset,” he said.
“We don’t step on anyone’s corns... we have played hard and we play with a smile on our face. We have done well so far but we want to get better in the semi-final and take it to the final. Everyone in the dressing room is happy and we want to share our happiness with all our fans and supporters.”
D Smith c Kamran Akmal b Tanvir 8
C Gayle st Kamran Akmal b Hafeez 5
L Simmons run out (Gul) 31
M Samuels b Afridi 20
Dwayne Bravo run out (Kamran Akmal) 46
D Ramdin+ c Umar Akmal b Zulfiqar Babar 5
D Sammy* not out 42
A Russell not out 0
Extras: (lb 4, w 5) 9
Total: 166/6 (20 Overs)
Did not Bat: S Narine, S Badree, K Santokie.
Fall of Wickets 1-10 (Gayle, 2.1 ov), 2-22 (Smith, 3.5 ov), 3-61 (Simmons, 10.1 ov), 4-67 (Samuels, 10.4 ov), 5-81 (Ramdin, 13.5 ov), 6-152 (Bravo, 19.1 ov).
Pakistan Bowling: M Hafeez 2-0-15-1, S Tanvir 4-0-27-1, Z Babar 4-0-27-1, S Afridi 4-0-23-1, U Gul 2-0-29-0, S Ajmal 4-0-41-0.
Pakistan (Target 167)
A Shehzad LBW Santokie 0
K Akmal+ c Bravo b Badree 0
Mohammad Hafeez* c Gayle b Russell 19
Umar Akmal st Ramdin b Badree 1
S Malik st Ramdin b Badree 2
S Maqsood st Ramdin b Narine 18
S Afridi st Ramdin b Narine 18
S Tanvir c Sammy b Narine 14
U Gul c Simmons b Santokie 4
S Ajmal b Russell 1
Z Babar not out 3
Extras: (w 2) 2
Total: 92 All Out (17.5 Overs)
Fall of Wickets: 1-0 (Ahmed Shehzad, 0.1 ov), 2-1 (Kamran Akmal, 1.3 ov), 3-9 (Umar Akmal, 3.6 ov), 4-13 (Shoaib Malik, 5.3 ov), 5-37 (Mohammad Hafeez, 10.3 ov), 6-42 (Sohaib Maqsood, 11.3 ov), 7-74 (Sohail Tanvir, 15.2 ov), 8-75 (Shahid Afridi, 15.5 ov), 9-78 (Saeed Ajmal, 16.5 ov), 10-82 (Umar Gul, 17.5 ov).
West Indies Bowling: K Santokie 2.5-0-9-2, S Badree 4-0-10-3, M Samuels 3-0-21-0, A Russell 3-0-15-2, S Narine 4-0-16-3, D Smith 1-0-11-0.
Result: West Indies won by 84 runs
Toss: West Indies won the toss and elected to bat
Points: West Indies 2 | Pakistan 0
Man of the Match: Dwayne Bravo (West Indies)
Umpires: Ian Gould (England) & Richard Kettleborough (England)
TV Umpire: Marais Erasmus (South Africa)
Match Referee: Ranjan Madugalle (Sri Lanka)
Reserve Umpire: Kumar Dharmasena (Sri Lanka)