Darren Bravo. COURTESY
Darren Bravo’s fourth One-Day International century guided the West Indies to a five-wicket victory over Sri Lanka and a clean sweep of the three-match series at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium in Antigua on Sunday. Set another challenging target of 275, the home side’s response was anchored by Bravo’s innings of 102 off 132 balls highlighted by five fours and four sixes.
He was the obvious choice as man of the match with Shai Hope the equally straightforward option as man of the series with the opener following earlier scores of 110 and 84 with an elegant 64 to set his team well on their way.
Sri Lanka, who made three changes to their team from the nail-biting loss in the second match two days earlier, fought to restrain a powerful West Indies batting line-up but in the end they were undone by the home side’s wealth of talent and experience. Captain Kieron Pollard ensured there was to be no late stumble despite Bravo’s dismissal to seamer Suranga Lakmal just before the end.
He finished unbeaten on 53, having featured in an 80-run fifth-wicket stand with Bravo and watched with contentment at the non-striker’s end as the man he replaced as skipper more than a year ago, Jason Holder, hoisted a six over wide long-on off Lakmal to formalise the result with nine balls to spare. In sweeping the series 3-0, the West Indies reversed the result of the corresponding campaign in Sri Lanka 13 months earlier.
Pollard led the West Indies to a 2-1 T20 International series win at the Coolidge Cricket Ground, also in Antigua, a week earlier and now attention shifts to the two-match Test series starting next Sunday at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium.