St George’s Grenada – West Indies again outplayed Zimbabwe to win the third and final One-Day International and secure a 3-0 series clean sweep on Tuesday. Darren Bravo made a classy, unbeaten 72 to lead the home side to a comprehensive five-wicket victory at the Grenada National Stadium.
The Windies finished on 215-5 in reply to the visitors’ 211-9, winning with 22 balls to spare. The home side won the opening match by 156 runs on Friday and followed up with a seven-wicket victory in the second match on Sunday.
It was a perfectly paced match-winning knock by the 24-year-old Bravo and helped to earn him the Man-of-the-Match award. He also won the Man-of-the-Series award as well, ending the three-match rubber with 172 runs at an average of 172.
Speaking after the victory, Bravo said he was elated. He noted that the key to Tuesday’s performance was the fact that he batted through to the end of the innings, in a similar manner to his maiden ODI century in the first match last Friday.
“In or team meetings the coach always asks for someone to bat through the innings. Today was the ideal opportunity for me and I went out there with that one goal in mind. I just wanted to bat to the end and I knew if I was there at the end we would win the match and win the series 3-0,” he told reporters after the match.
“In the first match I played really well and got my first hundred. In the second match Sarwan did the job by batting through to the end and he got a great hundred. Today we lost a few quick wickets and key wickets as well, so it was a matter of me buckling down and looking to take it all the way to the finish. It was good that I played that role today and will look to do it in games to come,” he said.
Bravo was calm throughout his innings and hit five boundaries off 103 balls to showcase his star quality. He played a number of crisps strokes on both sides of the field and pierced the inner ring on numerous occasions.
“After coming back from Australia, where we didn’t do very well, it was just a matter of me believing in myself and looking to make the most of the opportunities. I went out and backed myself and looked to execute the game plan. It was a matter of understanding the situation and doing what was required for the team. Zimbabwe played well – they never sat back and surrendered – so we had to make sure we played well and played smart against them,” Bravo said.
The two teams will travel to Antigua on Wednesday for the two-match T20 International Series, which will be played at the Vivian Richards Cricket Ground on Saturday and Sunday.