Windies Overcome Try ODI Unease In Series Decide > Cricket News, cricinfo, mobilecric, cricbuzz, livescore and more

Cricket news - Windies seek to overcome ODI malaise in series-decider

Anything other than a win in the final ODI will consign Windies to their 18th straight series defeat in the format.

807 runs, 46 sixes, two world-class innings and a nail-biting finale settled by four wickets in five balls - this fifth and final ODI has a tough act to follow.

Have you even caught your breath yet? The events of Grenada more than made up for the washed out third ODI, with England triumphing by 29 runs to take a 2-1 lead in the series. The visitors can't lose the series, and they certainly won't want to draw it after digging so deep a few days ago to stop West Indies completing what would have been a true hall-of-fame chase.

The question to ask at this stage is what more do the respective teams need to find out about themselves? This is the last competitive one-dayer before World Cup squads need to be sorted so there could be scope for experimentation even with the series still live. England's hand was forced with Alex Hales coming in to open, and his fine innings of 82 suggests those on the bench are raring to go.

With that in mind, Eoin Morgan may be tempted to give David Willey a go, even if it is clear the all-rounder makes the final 15 because of his left-arm option. Similarly for Windies, they may fancy getting Andre Russell back in though his path is less clear cut after Carlos Brathwaite's two wickets and 50 in the fourth ODI. Not only would Russell provide extra zip to the attack, but he is another progressive ball-striker who does even the man-for-man match-up between the two sides.

But talk of mixing things up detracts from the competitiveness both teams will bring to this final encounter. England's vice-captain, Jos Buttler, has praised the testing nature of the last month, while Jason Holder, buoyed by his side showing they can compete with the best on their day, will be desperate to ensure West Indies truly overcome their ODI malaise. Anything other than a win here will consign them to their 18th straight series defeat in the format.

When: Saturday, March 2, 2019; 10:00 AM (local), 2 PM (GMT), 7:30pm (IST)

Where: Gros Islet, St Lucia

What to expect: If incredible run-scoring is not for you, never fear West Indies hosted Afghanistan here for two ODIs in 2017 and on both occasions wickets were in rich supply. A major factor was the atmospheric conditions around that time of year (June) which eventually saw the third ODI abandoned due to weather. Nevertheless, here is an opportunity for the bowlers to strike back.

Team news:

Windies

A more amenable surface for an extra pace bowler may mean a return Russell's return could come at the expense of Bishoo instead of Brathwaite. Then again, maybe the latter is still under threat of being swapped out.

Probable XI: Chris Gayle, John Campbell, Shai Hope, Darren Bravo, Shimron Hetmyer, Jason Holder, Carlos Brathwaite/Andre Russell, Ashley Nurse, Devendra Bishoo, Sheldon Cottrell, Oshane Thomas

England

Jos Buttler, Ben Stokes and Moeen Ali will return home after this match so expect them to have one last run out. If Roy's back is all better, expect him to start in the interest of continuity. Another rest for Chis Woakes could be on the cards, with Tom Curran or Willey replacing him.

Probable XI: Jason Roy, Jonny Bairstow, Joe Root, Eoin Morgan, Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler, Moeen Ali, Tom Curran, Liam Plunkett, Adil Rashid, Mark Wood

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