On Saturday 26th June, the West Indies T-20 team engaged the visiting South Africans in the first of the T-20 series in Grenada.
Except for Jason Holder, the West Indies playing eleven was a totally different team from the one that engaged the visitors in the test series, which was comprehensively lost by the host.
South Africa was sent in to bat first by Skipper Pollard and were off to a rollicking start, complements of De Cock and Hendricks.
However, once they were parted, wickets fell at regular intervals and it took the steadying hand of Patriots’ signee, Rassie Van der Dussen, to help bring the final total to some level of respectability.
The Windies in response went on a six-hitting binge, led by man of the match Evin Lewis, who played some superlative shots, all around the Park.
Chris Gayle and Andre Russell brought closure to the mauling, with a few lusty blows of their own.
In total, some 18 sixes were struck in the match: 15 by the Windies team and 3 by the visitors.
Summarized scores: West Indies 161 for 2 (Lewis 71, Gayle 32*, Russell 23*, (Shamsi 1-27) beat South Africa 160 for 6 (van der Dussen 56*, de Kock 37, Allen 2-18, Bravo 2-30) by eight wickets
Meanwhile, on Sunday 27th June, it was an entirely different story.
The South Africans obviously peeved by their mauling on the previous day, came with a mindset for revenge.
Batting first, Quinton De Cock and Hendricks, proceeded to repeat the rapid start of the previous game, but this time even better.
When they were parted by the youthful, somersaulting Sinclair, at 73, the Windies were still bowling just the seventh over.
However, despite a fine hand by Skipper Bavuma, the Windies team clawed back into the game, by restricting the visitors in the middle and late overs.
With just six more runs than the target of the previous day, many West Indian fans settled down to witness another mauling of the visitors ‘ bowling.
Add to that the fact that Lewis and Fletcher commenced in a similar mold of the previous day.
Things rapidly deteriorated when Lewis was bowled for 21 and thereafter, the batting struggled woefully.
It was like a procession of sorts, as all of the Windies world-beaters, came and went.
But the excitement was not quite over.
It came down to the last over, with all of 36 runs required from just six balls. A nigh impossible task, especially with world renowned Ngidi, with the ball.
However, the indomitable Fabian Allen obviously had other ideas.
The first two balls were pummeled lustily for huge maximums. The third was a beautifully bowled yorker and he failed to score. It seemed all over—but wait!
With the pressure mounting, Ngidi bowled a wide—23 required from three!
The next ball, Allen promptly dispatched for another maximum and the crowd was buzzing with the anticipation of a fairy tale ending, with 17 required from two legitimate deliveries. They would have been hoping for another wide or no ball to even up things.
Then disaster: Ngidi bowled another superb yorker and Allen was undone-plumb lbw and so the Proteas celebrated
Summarized scores: South Africa 166 for 7 (Bavuma 46, Hendricks 42, McCoy 3-25) beat West Indies 150 for 9 (Fletcher 35, Allen 34, Lewis 21, Holder 20, (Rabada 3-37) by 16 runs
Game three is now set for the same venue on Tuesday 29th June.