PROVIDENCE, Guyana, CMC – West Indies captain Chris Gayle has thanked the Guyanese fans for the huge support they provided for the Caribbean side during the second One day International which they won yesterday to level the five-match series at 1-1.
More than 16,000 fans packed the National Stadium — recording the biggest ever attendance for a cricket match in Guyana – and enjoyed a fine 21-run victory for the West Indies.
“First off all I have to commend the support we got today, it was tremendous, very noisy so we really enjoyed and (are) thankful for that,” said Gayle in his opening comment during the post-match presentation ceremony. The result was especially satisfying for the West Indies following their bizarre defeat in the opening game on Friday when coach John Dyson’s blunder in a Duckworth/ Lewis calculation allowed England to win by one run.
“We are very thankful. It was a good game, based on Friday’s game to come and give the crowd something to cheer about. (Support) means a lot to us, in the Test series we didn’t get this sort of support,” Gayle said.
An unbeaten 112 from Shivnarine Chanderpaul, his 10th ODI hundred, headlined the West Indies performance.The left-handed super star put on a crucial 133-run partnership with Ramnaresh Sarwan (74) and the two local players propelled West Indies to 264 for eight in their 50 overs.
West Indies successfully defended the target when they dismissed England for 243 with 10 balls to spare.
“I want to commend the guys for the effort that put in today,” Gayle said. “Shiv (Chanderpaul), the way he batted as well Sarwan in tremendous form as well and in the bowling department tremendous effort from the all-rounders again,” he added.
The big left-hander fell for 20 as West Indies dipped to 24 for two in the sixth over but he was pleased with how his side recovered and shouldered their responsibilities in tough conditions.
“It was a difficult wicket to bat on, we utilised it well early up in the innings. Once you get a good total on the board definitely you put them under pressure and picking up early wickets is very good,” Gayle said.
The series moves to Barbados for games three and four at Kensington Oval on Friday and Sunday and Gayle is happy that his players were able to rebound from Friday’s painful “loss”.
“The guys were a bit down from the last game so this is something that lifts our confidence a bit more but we are not over-confident, we have to go out there, take it step by step and hopefully we can win the next game as well … it’s a long way to go,” he said.