In the climactic clash set for Friday, December 22, 2023, at 1:30 a.m. IST, the West Indies and England lock horns in the decisive fifth T20I at Tarouba.
The series deadlock at 2-2 intensifies the significance of this encounter, with both teams striving for a pivotal victory to salvage a challenging cricketing year in 2023. The top bookmakers in India have amazing odds for this match.
The stakes are high, and the players are poised for a spirited battle, promising cricket enthusiasts an exhilarating showdown.
The West Indian players have played a really good brand of cricket in this T20I series after having an almost disappointing run in 2023. Nicholas Pooran is the team’s highest run-scorer in the series, with 139 runs in four innings.
All the players have contributed to the team’s total in the four matches, but in the last two, they have failed to take the team over the line.
One glaring positive for the West Indies is the return of Andre Russell, who was the player of the match in the first T20I and scored a quickfire fifty in the fourth match as well.
Alzarri Joseph, who had a huge payday at the IPL Auction 2024, is the team’s highest wicket-taker with six wickets in just three innings.
If Joseph is available, he comes in for Matthew Forde.
Predicted Lineup: Brandon King, Kyle Mayers, Nicholas Pooran (wk), Shai Hope, Sherfane Rutherford, Rovman Powell (c), Andre Russell, Jason Holder, Akeal Hosein, Matthew Forde/Alzarri Joseph, and Gudakesh Motie
After two disappointing defeats in the first two T20I matches, the next two matches have been about breaking and making records for the English team.
In the third match, England chased down a target of 223 without even breaking a sweat, and in the fourth match, they posted 267 runs on the board in a 20-over game, all thanks to Phil Salt's brilliance, who became only the third player in history to score back-to-back hundreds in T20I matches.
Apart from Phil Salt (293 runs in 4 innings), Jos Buttler has also played well, as he has scored 150 runs in 4 innings. The spinners have also kept the West Indian batters under control, as Adil Rashid has seven, whereas Rehan Ahmed has six wickets in the series.
No changes are expected in the playing XI in comparison to last match.
Predicted Lineup: Phil Salt (wk), Jos Buttler (c), Will Jacks, Liam Livingstone, Harry Brook, Moeen Ali, Sam Curran, Chris Woakes, Rehan Ahmed, Adil Rashid, and Reece Topley
In the first two matches, the team batting first posted a total of 170+ runs, whereas in the next two matches, the team batting first posted 200+ runs on the board.
If anything, this tells us that the fifth T20I match, which is an all-to-play encounter, will see the team batting first and scoring a minimum of 200 runs. It is difficult to predict which team will win the match and the series, but we think England, based on their current form, has an advantage going into the fifth match of the series.
The West Indian bowlers will have to get Phil Salt in the dugout as early as possible because, with the kind of form he is in, he will show no mercy on the bowlers.