Chris Gayle becomes first player to reach 14,000 T20 runs

Chris Gayle smashed 67 off 38 balls as West Indies won the series. Source: ESPN Cricinfo

ST LUCIA: Chris Gayle became the first player to score 14,000 T20 runs as West Indies won the series against Australia.

Australia suffered a fourth straight Twenty20 international cricket series loss after Chris Gayle returned to form for the West Indies in St Lucia. Gayle smashed 67 off 38 balls. It was the 41-year-old’s highest score in twenty T20 internationals since 2016.

West Indies took an unassailable 3-0 lead in the five-match series, winning by six wickets after reaching their target of 142 in 14.5 overs Gayle smashed seven sixes in the blistering knock.

Gayle, who had scored just 41 in his five previous T20 internationals made no runs in his first three deliveries from Mitchell Starc. But the left-hander blasted 18 runs off four consecutive Josh Hazlewood deliveries, following a six with three fours. He took 22 off an over from leg-spinner Adam Zampa, reaching his half-century with a third successive six before falling to recalled paceman Riley Meredith.

Australia scored a modest 141-6 after being dismissed for 140 and 127 in the first two games. Australia managed just 11 fours and two sixes in their 6-141 total. They scored just 69 runs off the last 10 overs, three fewer than in the first 10.

Captain Aaron Finch opted to bat first after losing the first two matches where he asked the West Indies to take first strike. They struggled against the dual spin attack of Fabian Allen, Hayden and veteran medium pacer Dwayne Bravo. A fourth-wicket stand of 59 – Australia’s first half-century partnership of the series – between Moises Henriques and Ashton Turner added some substance to the innings.

Australia did not capitalise on their opening stand of 41 from the first five overs. Matthew Wade (23 off 16) made a swift start, striking four boundaries from cover drives and pulls off his first 10 balls, before being bowled by Obed McCoy.

Finch got a start but again struggled for fluency after two single-digit dismissals, hitting just two boundaries. Mitchell Marsh was trapped lbw for nine when trying to sweep at left-arm spinner Allen. Australia lost just two wickets in the first 11 overs, but lost two in the 12th, both bowled by legspinner Walsh.