Grenada: Left-hander Darren Bravo struck a composed, unbeaten 72 Tuesday as the West Indies cruised to a 3-0 clean sweep over Zimbabwe in their one-day cricket series with a five-wicket victory in the third and final match at the National Stadium. Bravo's 103-ball knock guided the host to 215-5 off 46.2 overs as it chased Zimbabwe's modest total of 211-9 off 50 overs.
Opener Kieran Powell struck 42, while captain Dwayne Bravo contributed with 25 and wicket-keeper Denesh Ramdin had 24 not out. Tino Mutombodzi, in his first match, was the best of the Zimbabwean bowlers with 2-35 off 10 overs. Earlier, Chamu Chibhabha topscored with an unbeaten 48 after Vusi Sibanda (41) and Brendan Taylor (39) failed to capitalize on good starts. Left-arm spinner Veerasammy Permaul took 3-40 in his first match of the series, while Tino Best (2-38) and Dwayne Bravo (2-58) also help limit the visitors.
Zimbabwe were kept in check after winning the toss for the third straight time in the series, and choosing to bat. Tino Mawoyo, included in place of the ill Craig Ervine, fell for nine at 23-1 in the ninth over. The right-hander was lbw to Sunil Narine. Zimbabwe fell to 30-2 a few overs later when Hamilton Masakadza lost his middle stump trying to hit Dwayne Bravo over the top. Sibanda and Taylor revived the innings with a third wicket stand of 55 off 51 balls.
But both departed with a half century in sight to further derail Zimbabwe's progress. Sibanda was squared up by Tino Best and skewed a catch to mid-off. He struck three fours and a six off 60 balls. When Taylor fell, chipping an off drive to extra cover off Permaul, it was 104-4 in the 25th over. Permaul also accounted for Malcolm Waller (15), lbw to a straighter one, and Regis Chkabva (17), bowled by a similar delivery.
But Chibhabha counterattacked toward the end to give the innings some respectability. The 26-year-old, who opened in the first two matches, lashed three fours and two sixes off 62 balls as 51 runs came from the last eight overs. The West Indies' pursuit got a solid start from Powell and Ramnaresh Sarwan, the pair adding 46 in the first 12 overs. Sarwan, fresh off a century in Sunday's second match, eventually fell for 20 when he chipped Mutombodzi's third ball in international cricket back for a return catch.
Leg-spinner Mutombodzi also broke an emerging stand of 37 between Powell and Darren Bravo, Powell holing out to long-on after hitting five fours off 52 balls. But Darren Bravo anchored the innings after that and even though Masakadza's medium pace prised out Deonarine and Kieron Pollard was run out without facing a ball, the victory was achieved without much fuss.
Dwayne Bravo helped his brother add 46 off 43 balls for the fifth wicket while Ramdin hit the winning runs after sharing an unbeaten stand of 48 with Darren Bravo. Bravo, who hit an unbeaten century in the first match, won the Man of the Match and Man of the Series awards. The teams now meet in a two-match Twenty20 International series in Antigua on Saturday and Sunday.
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