Windies win again
West Indies completed a 4-1 one-day international series win over New Zealand with a 20-run triumph at Basseterre.
Dwayne Bravo battled to 53 and shared in half-century stands with Marlon Samuels and Devon Thomas before Andre Russell’s muscular 59 not out set up a competitive total of 241 for nine.
Kane Williamson threatened to lead New Zealand to victory with 69, but spinner Sunil Narine’s international-best 5-27 turned the game.
The Windies chose to bat but their openers went cheaply, Chris Gayle and Johnson Charles caught by Rob Nicol at point respectively off Kyle Mills and Tim Southee.
Dwayne Smith failed to overturn a leg-before decision on review as Southee's second wicket left the score 37 for three.
It was slow going for Samuels and, in particular, Bravo but they took the total past 50 and then eased the pressure with a six and a four respectively in Nicol’s second over.
Both offered difficult return catches before the fifty partnership arrived in 87 balls, but Southee had Samuels superbly held by Martin Guptill at extra-cover for 43. In the next over Kieron Pollard was caught at midwicket off Williamson.
Bravo struggled to 21 from 64 balls before heaving Nicol for six over midwicket as he shared in his second half-century stand.
After Thomas and Darren Sammy were caught in consecutive batting powerplay overs, Andrew Ellis claimed his second wicket by having Bravo held at midwicket.
Russell then took over, hitting Williamson for six and four and then hammering two Ellis full-tosses for maximums. Once Narine fell to Mills, Russell added back-to-back fours in the last over off Southee en route to his second-highest ODI score.
The Black Caps suffered a second-ball blow when Nicol clipped Tino Best to Bravo at short forward square.
However, Brendon McCullum made a rapid start with four early boundaries before Guptill hit first Best and then Russell for six.
The partnership reached 50 in the eighth over, but Narine deceived McCullum into edging to slip for 33. The spinner then trapped Guptill lbw for the same score, a decision upheld on review.
Captain Ross Taylor hit three boundaries but was unluckily stumped for 28, overbalancing as a quicker ball from Samuels rebounded into the stumps off Thomas’ pads. In the next over Best had Sammy caught at gully.
Tom Latham edged Bravo behind just before the batting powerplay, which started with New Zealand needing 102 from 15 overs with four wickets left.
Williamson pulled Best for his fourth boundary to bring up a 69-ball half-century and had good support from Ellis, but the required run-rate was still climbing and they needed somebody to emulate Russell’s fireworks.
Thirteen came off Bravo in the 42nd over and the fifty alliance arrived in the next, from 47 balls, before Bravo dropped Ellis at long-on.
Crucially, Williamson fell victim to a stunning diving catch at short midwicket by Gayle, who plunged to his right to snatch a full-blooded pull one-handed.
Narine had two more wickets in his next over, bowling Ellis and Mills before Trent Boult holed out to long-on off Bravo as the tourists were dismissed in 50 overs.
The teams next meet for the first of two Tests, starting on Wednesday week at Antigua.