Recent Match Report – West Indies vs U.A.E. 2nd ODI 2023

West Indies 306 (King 64, Charles 63, Zahoor 3-44) beat UAE 228 for 7 (Naseer 57, Hameed 49, Hodge 2-46) by 78 runs

Half-centuries from Brandon King and Johnson Charles, a spirited cameo from Odean Smith, and then a ruthless bowling display helped West Indies seal a series win against UAE in Sharjah on Tuesday.

The UAE bowlers did well to rein things in after a 129-run opening stand between King and Charles, even as Smith’s 24-ball 37 helped take West Indies past 300. However, another insipid performance with the bat by UAE meant West Indies cantered to victory in the second ODI.

After the visitors opted to bat, King, on the back of a fine century in the first ODI, played anchor as Charles took on the role of aggressor against the hosts’ opening bowlers Sanchit Sharma and Ali Naseer.

Charles, playing just his second ODI since 2016, hit Sanchit for two boundaries in his first over before smashing 18 of the 20 runs that came off the seventh over, bowled by Naseer. King, meanwhile, hit some gorgeous drives through the off side, as he picked up from where he left off.

The two took some time to settle against left-arm spinner Aayan Afzal Khan, but in his third over, they both skipped out of the crease to hit him for sixes down the ground.

Charles went on to bring up his half-century – his fifth in ODI cricket – off just 33 deliveries before he went on to hit a six and a four off the next two deliveries he faced. But playing in the afternoon heat, he seemed to tire as he added just two more runs off the next ten deliveries and holed out to long-on for a 47-ball 63 off Naseer.

That started West Indies’ slowdown, and they lost wickets in regular intervals after that.

King, who brought up a fifty of his own off 52 balls, struggled to put debutant legspinner Adhitya Shetty away, and was soon out to him thanks to a brilliant catch at long-on by Basil Hameed. Shetty nearly had another wicket in that over, but shelled the chance off his own bowling to give Keacy Carty a life.

Aayan then had Shamarh Brooks chopping on before getting Roston Chase to hit a half-hearted effort to long-on. Zahoor Khan, who was disciplined in his first spell, returned to the attack to get rid of Carty, who hit a drive straight to cover.

Shai Hope, batting at No. 6 – the lowest he has batted in ODIs – rebuilt for West Indies with a 43-run stand with Kavem Hodge, but when the two fell in consecutive overs to Naseer and Sanchit, West Indies were in a spot of bother at 249 for 7.

However, Smith’s swashbuckling knock, which comprised one six and three fours, helped take them past the 300-mark. Zahoor finished with three wickets, while Aayan, Naseer and Sanchit took two each.

Thereafter, it didn’t take the West Indies quicks long to make inroads as debutant right-arm seamer Akeem Jordan, playing in place of Keemo Paul, got UAE captain Muhammad Waseem nicking off in the fourth over.

Waseem’s opening partner Aryansh Sharma was next to go, flicking Smith straight to square leg.

West Indies’ spin trio of Chase, Hodge and Yannic Cariah then dried out the runs and took away any hopes UAE may have had of trying to upset the visitors: Lovepreet Singh, in his first game for UAE, struggled to get in before Hodge bowled him through the gate. Asif Khan made 4 off 22 balls before a fine catch from Dominic Drakes off Chase saw him return to the hut. Vriitya Aravind, who trudged to 36 off 52 deliveries, was next to go as he sliced a full delivery from Cariah to point.

Basil Hameed and Naseer then put on an 80-run stand after UAE were 95 for 5, but having already lost half the side, they couldn’t keep up with the asking rate.

Naseer was the only real bright spot with the bat for UAE, smashing three sixes and six fours en route to his 53-ball 57. Having made his ODI debut in the first match of the series, he now has two half-centuries in two games, with both coming at a strike rate of more than 100.

Hameed made 49 before holing out to deep midwicket off Chase, and Hodge got Naseer to top edge a slog to short third. Aayan also made a handy 23-ball 25, but in the end, West Indies’ total proved too much for the hosts.

UAE were able to bat out fifty overs, but were restricted to 228 after being bowled out for 202 in the first ODI. As for West Indies, the win will be a big confidence booster for them before they – alongside UAE – head to Zimbabwe for the World Cup qualifiers.

Abhimanyu Bose is a sub-editor with ESPNcricinfo

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