Three spectators hurt as stand collapses… along with Morgan, who now has 12 runs in his last seven T20 innings
ENGLAND tossed away a winning position and lost once more to the Windies team that broke their hearts last year.
And it wasn’t just England that collapsed – three spectators at the Emirates Riverside ground were injured when the floor of a stand collapsed.
Eoin Morgan’s men appeared in complete control in this one-off T20 showdown while Alex Hales was blazing his way to 43 from just 17 balls.
But then three wickets fell for the addition of just four runs – including Morgan, who continued his nightmare sequence of scoring just 12 runs in his last seven Twenty20 innings.
Although Jos Buttler and Jonny Bairstow threatened to put England back on course, their departure signalled the end and the Windies won by 21 runs.
The problem in the stand came during England’s innings and a Durham spokesman said:
“Three spectators were injured when a small section of the flooring became unstable, causing them to fall.
“Stewards evacuated that area of the stand efficiently. The stand is a permanent fixture and passed inspections this week.”
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The last time England faced West Indies in a Twenty20 match, Carlos Brathwaite whacked Ben Stokes for four successive sixes and sensationally won the World T20 event in Kolkata.
Now Brathwaite is captain but Stokes was rested from a match at his home ground.
The outcome was the same, however, as England lost a match they looked almost certain to win.
Chasing 177 to win, Jason Roy was caught at point for a golden duck and Hales was dropped at square leg from the first ball he faced.
But then the Notts opener – a contender for the Ashes squad as a middle-order batsman – launched a withering assault.
He struck a six and eight fours before having his stumps spread-eagled by Brathwaite.
Joe Root pushed a catch to cover and next Morgan reverse-swept to third man. Morgan’s desperate trot encompasses innings for Middlesex, Barbados Tridents and now England.
From 64-1, England were suddenly 68-4.
Buttler and Bairstow put on 50 for the fifth wicket but the required rate was growing and the pair both holed out trying to increase the tempo.
The key bowler was Sunil Narine, a magician in the Indian Premier League for many years, who took 2-15 in his four overs.
Earlier, the Windies ransacked 72 runs in the six-over power play and reached 106-1 after ten overs.
Chris Gayle, the self-proclaimed Universe Boss, hit four sixes on the way to 40 from 21 balls while Evin Lewis, whose domain is not yet so extensive, made 51 from 28 deliveries.
But the Yorkshire duo of Liam Plunkett and Adil Rashid applied the brakes by taking wickets.
Plunkett finished with 3-27 – which was pretty damn impressive considering he entered the attack in the seventh over with Gayle and Lewis in full fury.
It should be no surprise because Plunkett has been England’s most consistent white ball bowler for a couple of years.
Rashid also took three wickets for the first time in a T20 international and showed good control and a calm head.
Morgan said: “We felt it was a good wicket for batting. We felt confident of chasing 177 but then lost three wickets very quickly.
“Our skill level wasn’t there with the bat. There was a little white ball rustiness in everything we did, apart from our fielding.
“I haven’t scored many runs recently but my form is in and out all the time.It’s not much of a concern.”
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