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Upbeat Windies ready for SA test

Fresh from a Chris Gayle power show that took them to their second win in the World Cup, a buoyant West Indies will now take on South Africa, who are still licking their wounds after the 130-run hammering against India, in a Pool B match on Friday.

Once again all eyes will be on Gayle, who smashed the first double century of the 50-over showpiece event against Zimbabwe in their previous game, and it will be interesting to see how the destructive opener tackles one the most potent bowling attacks, led by Dale Steyn.

After being shocked by Ireland in their opening game, West Indies turned on the heat against Pakistan to humble the Misbah ul Haq-led side by 150 runs and then romped past Zimbabwe to get placed behind leaders India in the pool table.

The destructive Gayle came out of his slumber in Canberra, hitting a 147-ball 215 to sound the warning bells for every side in the competition. Sharing a record 372-run second wicket partnership with Marlon Samuels (133), Gayle, who became the only non-Indian batsman after Sachin Tendulkar, Virender Sehwag and Rohit Sharma (2) to hit a double ton in ODIs, set a new benchmark of run-scoring in this edition of World Cup.

The West Indies pace attack comprising Jerome Taylor, skipper Jason Holder and Andre Russell has also showed intent after a lacklustre showing against the William Porterfield-led side, which cantered to their 305-run target in 45.5 overs.

South Africa, however, still hold the edge against a side they completely outplayed when they met last month for a five-match ODI series. South Africa won the series 4-1 to batter their opponents in all departments.

PTI

PTI

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