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Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Cricket World Cup: Kemar Roach hat-trick destroys Dutch

By Oliver Brett

Kemar Roach finished off a fine team performance with a hat-trick as West Indies beat Netherlands by 215 runs.

The 22-year-old from Barbados took the first World Cup hat-trick by a West Indian in superb figures of 6-27.

Chris Gayle (80) and Kieron Pollard (60 from 27 balls) took the Windies to an imposing 330-8 on a pitch of irregular bounce, before Roach got stuck in.

The fast bowler produced some exhilarating pace as the associate nation capitulated for 115.

Roach's hat-trick, with the first three balls of the 32nd over (his ninth), saw Pieter Sielaar and Bernard Loots beaten for pace and trapped lbw, before last man Berend Westdijk had his middle stump flattened in emphatic style.

The West Indies' total was the highest at the Feroz Shah Kotla stadium, which had only recently returned to international service following a 12-month suspension over a dangerous playing surface.

Even when South Africa had beaten West Indies at the same ground last Thursday, however, there were signs that batting remained a tough proposition.

And although West Indies, surprisingly inserted by Dutch skipper Peter Borren, encountered few alarms, a few deliveries barely bounced as they skidded through the dry surface.

Gayle's innings was a sensible one. The former skipper dropped anchor in a 100-run stand for the first wicket with Devon Smith (53), while Pollard provided the theatrics late on, hammering five fours and four sixes in the third-fastest World Cup half-century. Ramnaresh Sarwan chipped in with a 42-ball 49.

By contrast, the Dutch batsmen floundered in the face of early strikes from Roach and left-arm spinner Sulieman Benn (3-28).

Roach went on to collect only the sixth World Cup hat-trick and the first of the tournament, as well as the eighth-best figures recorded in the ICC's flagship event.

Essex pro Ryan ten Doeschate, who scored 119 in the closer encounter against England, could not produce another heroic effort for the Netherlands. He fell lbw to Benn for just seven.

Tom Cooper provided the only resistance with an unbeaten 55 off 72 balls, while Dutch spinner Sielaar (3-45) had some joy with the ball amid the mayhem caused by the West Indies bladesmen.

"The ability to keep my pace up and be accurate is the biggest positive for me," Roach said afterwards. "The surface was slow, so our plan was to bowl straight and fast."

He added that he had been inspired by injured all-rounder Dwayne Bravo, whose tournament ended with a knee injury sustained on Thursday.

"I take a lot of inspiration from him, to me he is the big brother. His words inspired me this morning. He tried to give me confidence and I'm glad to perform in front of him.

"He said 'go hard and enjoy', as he always does, 'and be confident of what you do'."

Borren admitted: "I don't think the wicket really worsened, if anything it stayed lower in the first innings, showing just how much we were outplayed today.

"The guys didn't turn up today after a decent performance against England."

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