JAMAICA: Ablistering 102-run opening wicket stand between Brandon King and Shamarh Brook guided West Indies to a win against New Zealand by eight wickets in the third T20I to prevent a sweep in the three-match series on Sunday. Despite suffering a defeat against West Indies by 8 wickets in the third and final match New Zealand clinched the T20I series 2-1.
Chasing 146, right-hander Brandon King (53) got the hosts off to a flyer on his return from injury, while fellow opener Shamarh Brooks (56*) played a more cautious role as the hosts put on 102 for the opening wicket to leave New Zealand requiring a miracle. Rovman Powell (27*) came in to guide the run chase home, with the stand-in West Indies captain smashing Jimmy Neesham for six on the final delivery of the penultimate over to seal the contest.
Earlier opting to bat first, the New Zealand top-order made double-digit figures during their respective innings, but only one batter scored more than 24 as the hosts' excellent bowling restricted visitors from scoring runs. Glenn Phillips looked the best of the New Zealand batters, smashing 41 from just 26 balls to help the visitors post a below-par score of 145/7 from their allotted 20 overs. While New Zealand opener Martin Guptill only scored 15 before he was bowled by Akeal Hosein, the veteran did enough to become the leading run-scorer in the history of men's T20I.
The decision by the West Indies to play two spinners proved crucial in the match, with Hosein bagging two wickets conceding 18 runs and Hayden Walsh (1/16) creating difficulties for batters to play big shots and pacer Odean Smith (3/29) reaping the rewards with career-best figures. Brief score: New Zealand 145/7 (Glenn Phillips 41, Kane Williamson 24; Odean Smith 3-29) vs West Indies 150/2 (Shamarh Brooks 56*, Brandon King 53; Ish Sodhi 1-36).