Joe Root completed his first one-day international century to help guide England to a 25-run victory over the West Indies on Wednesday in the deciding match of their three-game series in Antigua.
Root made 107 off 122 deliveries to help the tourists compile an imposing total of 303-6 after opener Moeen Ali had laid the foundations with 55 and wicketkeeper Jos Buttler added 99 late in the innings.
The West Indies, in reply, were bowled out for 278 in the 48th over to concede the series 2-1, despite a heroic batting performance by Denesh Ramdin.
The home side were in early trouble after slumping to 43-4 in the eighth over when Ramdin came to the crease. The West Indies ’keeper proceeded to blast a career-best 128 off 109 deliveries, pummeling 12 fours and five sixes.
His explosive innings threatened to turn the match around, but the fightback ended when he was the last man out, bowled by a yorker from all-rounder Tim Bresnan (3-45) that knocked his leg stump out of the ground.
“We were confident to chase, it was a good wicket, but the top order failed and it didn’t quite come off at the end,” West Indies captain Dwayne Bravo said at the post-match presentation. “I think Root and Buttler batted well, they capitalized on the start they had ... we didn’t get it right at the key moments, the first 10 overs, it’s something we have to work on, as a team and a batting group.”
Root came out with England in a sticky situation at 37-2 after Ben Stokes went for a golden duck, but calmly set about rebuilding the innings, hitting seven boundaries to reach his ton, despite being hit on the thumb.
Buttler was unlucky not to reach triple figures as well.
He struck seven boundaries and four sixes only to fall in the last over when he misjudged a slower ball from Ravi Rampaul, which he chipped in the air for a return catch.
The teams are scheduled to play each other in three Twenty20s in Barbados, starting on Sunday.