17 October 2022

Scotland stun former champions West Indies at T20 World Cup

17 October 2022

Scotland claimed one of the greatest wins in their history, upsetting the odds at the T20 World Cup again as they beat the West Indies by 42 runs at Hobart.

George Munsey’s unbeaten 66 off 53 balls underpinned Scotland’s 160 for five after they lost the toss, with important cameos from Calum MacLeod (23 off 14) and Chris Greaves (16 not out off 11).

The Windies raced to 53 for one but Evin Lewis was out from the penultimate ball of the powerplay, the start of a dramatic collapse that saw the 2012 and 2016 winners lose seven wickets for 26 runs in 45 deliveries.

It was the decisive moment in both sides’ opening Group B encounter in this first round, with Mark Watt, so often crucial to Scotland’s success, shining as the Windies were rolled for 118 in 18.3 overs.

The slow left-armer was clever with his variations and finished with three for 12 from his four overs to boost Scotland’s hopes of qualifying for the Super 12s stage for a second successive year.

Twelve months ago they overcame Bangladesh, Papua New Guinea and tournament co-hosts Oman to top their preliminary group, the first time they had gone past the first round at any World Cup event.

While the Windies are without the likes of Chris Gayle, Dwayne Bravo, Andre Russell, Sunil Narine and Kieron Pollard in Australia, they were still fancied in a group also containing Ireland and Zimbabwe.

But chilly conditions at the Bellerive Oval seemed to play into Scotland’s hands and the Windies must now win their last two group games to give themselves the best chance of avoiding an ignominious exit.

Scotland, who at 15th in the world are ranked eight places below the Windies in T20s, started strongly as Munsey and Michael Jones peppered the rope to bring up a 50-run opening stand after five overs.

The Windies were guilty of bowling too full but a 45-minute rain delay gave them a chance to reset, with Jason Holder getting Jones to inside edge a drive on to his stumps for 20 off 17 balls.

Holder also struck in his next over when Matthew Cross miscued a pull and although Scotland captain Richie Berrington struck Akeal Hosein for a mighty leg-side six, it was a rare boundary in the middle stages.

With Munsey struggling to time the ball but anchoring the innings, MacLeod brought some much-needed intent with back-to-back fours off Obed McCoy before driving to short cover off Odean Smith.

Munsey, who was ably supported by Greaves towards the end of Scotland’s innings, brought up a 43-ball fifty and then hammered three fours off Smith in a final over which yielded 15 runs.

Windies opener Kyle Mayers bludgeoned three fours and a six and contributed all 20 of his side’s runs before thumping to the leg-side sweeper, although Lewis and Brandon King seemed to settle quickly.

But after Lewis was also out to a catch in the deep for 14 and Watt struck with his fourth ball, knocking back King’s off-stump when he was on 17, the Windies lost wickets at regular intervals.

Michael Leask (two for 15 from four overs) bowled captain Nicholas Pooran before Rovman Powell hammered the off-spinner to the long-on fielder to leave the Windies teetering on 69 for five just after halfway.

Holder, who had earlier taken two for 14 from three overs, tried to rally the two-time winners but was last man out as the second day of this tournament produced another major shock – 24 hours after Namibia’s surprise Group A win over Asia Cup champions Sri Lanka.

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