West Indies are World Twenty20 Champions
West Indies mounted a stunning comeback in the 2012 ICC World Twenty20 final in Colombo on Sunday night to beat Sri Lanka by 36 runs and lift the world’s premier T20 trophy.
After choosing to bat first, West Indies lost opener Johnson Charles without a run on the board. The first run came off a wide in the 2nd over and the first run by a batsman came in the third over. They lost a very cautious Chris Gayle (3, 16b) just before the powerplay ended, reaching 14/2 at the end of 6 overs and only mustering 18 more runs to reach 32/2 at the halfway mark after 10 overs.
Before Dwayne Bravo (19) hit a six in the 12th over, the only boundary in the innings had been a four off Kulasekara in the 3rd over. After Bravo’s six, Marlon Samuels unleashed a furious onslaught, hitting 3 off Malinga in the next over.
Ajantha Mendis (4/12) struck back by dismissing Dwayne Bravo, Samuels hit 14 off Jeevan Mendis in the next over, bringing his 50 up off 46 balls. Ajantha removed Kieron Pollard (2) and Andre Russell off consecutive deliveries, Samuels again looted 19 off Malinga’s next over with a four and a six. He was dismissed by Akila Dananjaya (1/16) in the 18th over but not before he had slammed 78 off 56b (4x3, 6x6).
Darren Sammy (26*, 15b) finished with quick running and three fours off Malinga (0/54) and Kulasekara, taking West Indies to a respectable 137/6.
Despite the early loss of Tillakaratne Dilshan (0) and tough scoring conditions, Jayawardene (33) and Sangakkara (22) knocked a significant part off the total in a 48 run stand for the 2nd wicket. Sammy still applied pressure with a close field and by cutting runs short, the ploy worked. The attacking field, resultant daft shots and tight bowling from the spin duo of Narine and Badri (1/24) saw SL crumble to 69/7 from 48/1. Two of the dismissals were run outs and Sammy (2/6) himself sent back Thirimanne, the seventh wicket to fall. A poor over from Ravi Rampaul (1/31) followed which saw Kulasekara (26, 13b, 4x3, 6x1) slogging 22 off it.
Sammy immediately brought Narine (3/9) back and had Kulasekara caught in the deep, leaving SL at 96/8. Samuels (1/15) had Ajantha Mendis holing out off him in the next over before Narine finished with the wicket of Lasith Malinga to end SL’s innings on 101 in 18.4 overs, giving West Indies a 36 run win and their first World title since the 1979 World Cup.
WI’s last major overs triumph was the 2004 ICC Champions Trophy win in England, a win which set off many false alarms of a West Indies revival. Darren Sammy will hope the revival sustains the intensity and results which did not come last time.
Marlon Samuels won the Man of the Match for the final while Shane Watson was declared Player of the Tournament for his 249 runs and 11 wickets in a streak which saw him take 4 MotM awards in a row at a point.