West Indies seal T20I series after Alzaari Joseph’s 5-fer fires them to victory in decider
31 March 2023
The West Indies sealed a T20i series win in a thrilling third T20I match between West Indies and South Africa, claiming the series 2-1, the former emerged victorious by seven runs and claimed the series 2-1. West Indies fast bowler Alzarri Joseph played a crucial role in the win, taking three wickets in the 19th over to finish off South Africa’s innings. Joseph finished with figures of 5-40, after his late burst helped restrict South Africa to 213-6 in their 20 overs, falling short of West Indies’ challenging total of 220-8.
Despite a brief threat from South Africa, mainly due to Reeza Hendricks’ impressive 83 off 44 balls, they were ultimately unable to chase down the target. Joseph’s dismissal of Hendricks on the first ball of the 19th over proved to be a turning point, as the batsman was caught at long-on while attempting his third six.
The West Indies got off to a flying start in their match against South Africa, with Kyle Mayers hitting two sixes off Wayne Parnell and Brandon King following suit by clearing the ropes off back-to-back deliveries from Lungi Ngidi.
However, Kagiso Rabada put a stop to their momentum by dismissing Mayers and Johnson Charles in consecutive deliveries. Despite this, the visitors continued to dominate the game and reached 108 runs by the halfway mark, even though they had lost half their side already.
Nicholas Pooran was in fine form but was dismissed by Ngidi in the 11th over, leaving the West Indies struggling at 153/7 with five overs left to play. However, Romario Shepherd’s late onslaught in the final over saw the West Indies amass a commanding total of 220, with Shepherd hitting three consecutive sixes off Rabada, who was having a fine night until that over.
South Africa’s response to West Indies’ imposing total started slowly, with only seven runs coming off the first two overs. However, Quinton de Kock quickly got into gear and hit three boundaries off Roston Chase’s second over. But Joseph outfoxed him with a slower ball, resulting in his dismissal.
Rilee Rossouw, who came in at No.3, immediately showed his intent by hitting his first ball for four and then smashing Joseph for a six and another four. At the end of the powerplay, South Africa were on the same score as West Indies but had lost one wicket fewer.
Reeza Hendricks played a brilliant knock, hitting his sixth T20I half-century in his last eight innings. He was particularly strong on the leg side, hitting a massive six over deep mid-wicket off Romario Shepherd. Although he was dropped on the next ball, he continued his aggressive approach and remained at the crease until the penultimate over, scoring a career-best 83.
However, when he tried to hit Joseph over long-on for another big shot, he was caught on the fence by Powell. South Africa lost their momentum after his dismissal and Joseph claimed two more wickets in the penultimate over to complete his five-wicket haul, securing a seven-run victory for the West Indies.