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Williams defies Windies might

March 20, 2007
Sean Williams came up with a fighting knock for Zimbabwe but it wasn’t enough to stop the West Indies from winning by six wickets and sealing a place in the Super Eight stage of the World Cup.

His unbeaten 70 saw Zimbabwe recover from 59 for four and post a healthy total of 202 for five before the West Indies rattled off the runs.

Sent in to bat on a hard, true Sabina Park pitch, under partly cloudy skies, Zimbabwe were indebted to half-centuries from Williams and Brendan Taylor, as well as a late cameo from Elton Chigumbura.

The West Indies had early success, when new ball bowlers Jerome Taylor and Daren Powell bowled both Zimbabweans openers Friday Kasteni and Vusimuzi Sibanda inside the first three overs. But left-hander Williams stood firm, top-scoring with 70 from 88 balls that included seven boundaries.

The 20-year-old was involved in a vital stand of 83 runs for the fifth wicket with Brendan Taylor, who made 50 from 121 balls, to help Zimbabwe recover from the early setbacks.

After Taylor was run out in the 41st over, Chigumbura gave the Zimbabweans a late boost, with a quick 30 from 29 deliveries.

With five down and nine overs left, Zimbabwe needed to step on the accelerator if they were to set West Indies a testing target and Williams and Chigumbura responded well with a 60-run partnership leaving their side with an outside chance.

Even though he ended up on the losing, Williams was deservedly named the man of the match. Not only did he come up with the best knock of the match but also excelled in the field.

Photographs: Getty Images

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