Basseterre (St Kitts), July 12: Opener Chris Gayle has failed for the first time in five innings, triggering a miserable West Indies batting slide that culminated in their disappointing 88-run defeat by New Zealand in the third One-Day International.
Chasing a challenging 250 for victory and a series-clinching 3-0 lead in the five-match series, West Indies proved a shadow of the side that dominated previous matches and crumbled for 161 all out off 34.3 overs, their lowest ever ODI total at Warner Park, here Wednesday.
Gayle, with three half-centuries and a century in his last four innings on tour, could only manage 11 this time around and it was left to fellow Jamaican Andre Russell to blast an unbeaten 42 at the end, to be the only batsman to pass 20, reports Caribbean Media Corporation (CMC).
Pacer Jacob Oram (2-22), off-spinner Nathan McCullum (2-40) and left-arm seamer Trent Boult (2-45) all finished with two wickets apiece.
The victory halted the West Indies’ four-match winning streak, starting with the T20 double-header in Florida, and allowed New Zealand to get back into the series after losing the first two matches at Sabina Park, Jamaica.
Earlier, pacer Russell snared four for 57 – his second four-wicket haul of the series – to help limit the tourists to 249 for nine after they were sent in.
Opener Rob Nicol top-scored with 59 and Nathan McCullum got an even fifty, while in-form BJ Watling scored a busy 40, but New Zealand squandered a strong position of 123 for three in the 26th over.
Off-spinner Sunil Narine also proved a thorn in their side with two for 28 from his 10 overs.
West Indies were stunned when Gayle departed in the ninth over, caught at first slip pushing tentatively at one angled across him by Southee.
Dwayne Smith tried to hit West Indies out of trouble, counting two fours and a six in 19 but went for one too many big strokes and skied a catch to McCullum running back at cover.
Two runs and four balls later in the next over at 52 for four, West Indies found themselves in disarray when Dwayne Bravo was tragically run out for two attempting a suicidal third run and failed to beat the stron arm of Southee in the 13th over.
Marlon Samuels also got run out for 11 by a direct throw from the covers by Martin Guptill.
McCullum prised out both Kieron Pollard (16) and captain Darren Sammy (7) as West Indies tumbled to 95 for seven in the 27th over, and Denesh Ramdin’s 40-ball dither over 14 ended when he was trapped plumb in front to Oram.
Russell then chanced his arm, belting three fours and four sixes off just 24 balls, but that was not enough.
Man-of-the-Match Nicol had earlier controlled the early part of the Black Caps innings in a knock that lasted 69 balls and comprised four fours and three sixes.
After Guptill fell early for 11, he put on 47 for the second wicket with Daniel Flynn (28) before New Zealand lost three wickets for 28 runs to stutter to 125 for five in the 27th.
McCullum and Watling rescued the Kiwis with a fighting 66-run, sixth wicket stand which put their side in sight of the 200-run mark.
While McCullum faced 70 balls and hit four fours and a six, Watling’s innings lasted 47 balls and also included a similar boundary count.
New Zealand 249 for nine off 50 overs (Rob Nicol 59, Nathan McCullum 50, BJ Watling 40, Daniel Flynn 28; Andre Russell 4-57, Sunil Narine 2-28)
West Indies161 off 34.3 overs (Andre Russell 42 not out; Jacob Oram 2/22, Nathan McCullum 2/40, Trent Boult 2/45)