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Brandon King brings the West Indies home after the collapse of the English baton | locust

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Different format, different opponents, same old story for England, who started their Twenty20 series against the West Indies in Barbados with very different personnel but in precisely the same style in which they finished the Ashes, punctuated by an embarrassing rattle of counters.

The tourists lost first the draw and then their temper as they crashed to 49 for seven before Chris Jordan and Adil Rashid inspired some sort of recovery, but the West Indies, powered by a Brandon King’s suitably royal half-century, made their suitably insignificant tally of 103 appear and won by nine wickets with 17 balls remaining.

In the quarter of England’s innings, 30 balls had been played, only five marks played and four wickets lost. By the end of the power play, they were 26 for four and Eoin Morgan had faced 11 deliveries for the score of one. When Sam Billings was puzzled late in the seventh, England had lost 15 wickets for 95 runs in two formats and two continents – Billings personally contributing two wickets and three runs to the long-distance collapse.

West Indies, knocked out for 55 when the sides met in Dubai at the Twenty20 World Cup in October, were never likely to feel any sympathy, their only disappointment being a flurry of borders from Jordan and Rashid carried tourists beyond that total and carried England from the brink of humiliation to the sunny highlands of triple figures.

Brandon King brings the West Indies home after the collapse of the English baton |  locust

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Brandon King hit a half-century unbeaten run for the West Indies. Photography: Gareth Copley/Getty Images

The first part of the game ended with Sheldon Cottrell performing his familiar walk and salute celebration after Jason Roy completely missed a full throw, lost his center stump and set the tone. The England fly-half had hit the previous ball for six, and the next player to score was also quickly dismissed, Tom Banton knocking Jason Holder to the ground for four before immediately slipping, where Nicholas Pooran took a fine low grip. Moeen Ali hit his first ball straight to the backseat and England were 10 for three after two overs.

Morgan and James Vince seemed to have brought some semblance of normality to the proceedings as the latter hit two fours and a leading six on Cottrell. But just as the England fans, who made up the overwhelming majority of the Bridgetown crowd, could have felt the crisis dissipate, Vince cracked the last ball from the same Cottrell directly at the defender from cover, and the collapse unfolded. for follow-up.

There were many reasons for England’s failure: an early swing, uneven rebounding, disciplined bowling and a good error-free pitch. Jason Holder returned career-best four-for-seven numbers and looked superb. But totals this low normally involve a bit of self-destruction and Liam Dawson provided the clearest case, pushing a delivery from Akeal Hosein to Kieron Pollard, taking cover and going for a single before slipping when challenged. inevitably told to turn around. Pollard returned the ball underarm for Shai Hope to complete the run-out.

England needed early wickets to hopefully stave off an unlikely victory, and got none. Not in a great rush, Brandon King and Shai Hope guided the West Indies to 50 unbeaten in the ninth over, precisely four overs quicker than England, who were of course seven at the time.

They had some luck along the way – Hope deflected a Saqib Mahmood delivery into the ground and right after his stumps and Dawson, making his first T20i appearance for a month before four, threatened both hitters at the ninth, ending with a fine delivery that beat King but cleared the stumps – but with little pressure on the scoreboard, they relaxed and showed real quality.

But King was beautifully composed and landed exceptional shots – a huge sweep from Rashid and a clean cut from Tymal Mills stood out – as he propelled his team home. With Game 2 of the series coming up on Sunday night, England have little time to brood over this performance, but as one big man came close to saying, the memories of their knocking out of hell won’t fade come morning. .

Brandon King brings the West Indies home after the collapse of the English baton | locust

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