- Sam Curran responded in impressive style as England beat West Indies
- England finished at 206-4 as they secured a series-levelling victory
Sam Curran roared back from the worst performance of his international career to decimate West Indies’ top order and propel England to a series-levelling win at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium.
Three days after returning figures of 9.5-0-98-0, the most expensive by an Englishman in 53 years of one-day internationals, Surrey all-rounder Curran produced a new-ball spell of three for one in eight deliveries to silence the steel drums and plunge the hosts to 23 for four – a position from which they never recovered.
Keacy Carty and Brandon King both sliced to Zak Crawley at slip while a ball that bent round the bat of Shimron Hetmyer, stumbling forward, was the subject of a successful LBW review by a rejuvenated England captain Jos Buttler.
And although Buttler’s opposite number Shai Hope combined with Sherfane Rutherford in a counter stand of 129 in 23 overs, it proved only a brief reprieve as England showed a ruthless streak lacking in Sunday’s opening loss.
Hope and Rutherford fell in consecutive overs from Liam Livingstone and the tourists simply scythed through the West Indies’ lower order, wrapping up the innings with more than 10 overs unused.
Sam Curran bounced back to propel England to a series-levelling win against West Indies
England’s Gus Atkinson celebrates after taking the wicket of Wet Indies’ Alick Athanaze
Will Jacks exploded out of the blocks in pursuit of 203 as he helped England to victory
Rehan Ahmed induced a couple of miscues to replicate his first-match analysis of two for 40 and Gus Atkinson book-ended the innings with wickets, snaring Alzarri Joseph with a short ball, having accounted for Alick Athanaze as early as the fourth over, after Buttler had offered his bowlers first use of a fresh pitch.
Victory was secured at a canter too after Will Jacks exploded out of the blocks in pursuit of 203.
As in the first match of three here, Jacks shared a half-century partnership with Phil Salt and remained unperturbed by the loss of his his opening partner, bringing up a 43-ball 50 shortly after upper-cutting fast bowler Oshane Thomas for his third six.
The 25-year-old dominated the scoring, making 73 by the time he was fourth out with the scoreboard reading 117: part-time medium pacer Sherfane Rutherford pinning him on the shin.
That brought the previously out-of-touch Buttler to the crease and the England captain fought through a tough early examination from Yanic Cariah to rediscover the fluency missing since the 2023 home summer, bringing the requirement below 50 with the first of successive straight sixes off the leg-spinner, and his first 50 in 14 innings with a third clearance of the rope off Oshane Thomas in what turned out to be the penultimate over of the contest.
Victory for England, by six wickets, sets up a decider in Barbados on Saturday.
Sherfane Rutherford celebrates with Shimron Hetmyer after taking the wicket of Jacks
Harry Brook hits a six during England’s victory against West Indies in Antigua
Rehan Ahmed (left) and Ben Duckett (right) celebrate the dismissal of Romario Shepherd