Joe Root scored his second century of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 as England crushed the West Indies by eight wickets in Southampton on Friday with 16.5 overs to spare. The host nation won the toss and made the most of favourable bowling conditions on a day when the rain finally relented, bowling the West Indies out for 212.
It was a really good team effort
But by the time they came to bat the sun was out and tournament favourites England rarely looked troubled, with Root in particular timing the ball beautifully during his 100 not out. Test captain Root opened alongside Jonny Bairstow in place of the injured Jason Roy, who had limped off the field with a tight hamstring during the West Indies innings.
“It’s obviously nice for this hundred to mean something and for us to win. It was a great toss to win and important we followed through on that,” Root said.
“You pride yourself on working it out as a batsman, building big partnerships either when setting or closing down a chase like we did today.
“It was a really good team effort and performance and puts us in a good place going into the next match.”
Root, who made 107 in England’s defeat against Pakistan, made batting look easy, scoring a run-a-ball 50 without having to take unnecessary risks as he and Bairstow tamed the West Indies quicks.
Shannon Gabriel had Bairstow caught by Carlos Brathwaite for 45, leaving England 95-1, but Chris Woakes was quickly into his stride, drilling a four back past Gabriel off his third ball. With the end in sight, Woakes was dismissed for 40, caught by substitute Fabian Allen off the bowling of Gabriel.
Root reached three figures off 93 balls with 11 fours and is now the tournament’s top-scorer — with a total of 279 runs in four innings.
Frustrated West Indies captain Jason Holder said: “We didn’t put enough runs on the board. There were a few careless shots, if we had hung in a bit longer we could have got some more in the end.
“We need more ownership in the middle. Batters got out at crucial stages, we need to correct it. It’s happened twice in two games now.