England crush West Indies to complete 3-0 whitewash
Alex Hales and Joe Root struck stunning centuries as England steamrollered West Indies by 186 runs in Barbados to complete a one-day series whitewash. The pair put on a record 192 for the second wicket, with Hales the more aggressive of the two and Root happy to play the anchor role.
West Indies were never in contention and meekly surrendered with the bat – being bowled out for just 142. Liam Plunkett and Chris Woakes took three wickets apiece with the ball.
If the West Indies showed glimpses of ability in the first two matches of the series, there was very little of it on show at the Kensington Oval. The gulf in class between the two teams was striking.
While England’s batting order is rich in both talent and depth, the Windies’ top order gifted their wickets with a succession of dolly catches offered up to close fielders.
It was a similar story from a bowling perspective as England’s pacemen bullied and harassed. The hosts’ options lacked penetration in the absence of the injured Shannon Gabriel and proved to be cannon fodder for the likes of Root, Hales and Ben Stokes.
England’s morale will be boosted by such victories, but it should be tempered with the realisation their opponents have failed to qualify for this summer’s Champions Trophy and now face an uphill challenge to earn automatic entry to the 2019 World Cup. (BBC Sport)