Shai Hope backs West Indies in race to 500

Shai Hope
Shai Hope

One of the big questions ahead of the World Cup is whether it will be the moment the 500-mark is breached in ODIs. It is certainly in range with England holding the current record of 481 for 6 against Australia last year and they are a team fancied to push it further, but Shai Hope is backing West Indies to be the team to break the magical mark.

There is certainly no lack of power in West Indies’ line-up as they reminded everyone by piling up 421 against New Zealand in Bristol. Hope’s contribution was a skillful 101 off 86 balls with the early onslaught provided by Chris Gayle (36 off 22) and later Andre Russell (54 off 25 balls). The only players to strike below 100 were Evin Lewis – who still managed 50 off 54 balls – and No. 11 Kemar Roach.

“It is definitely a goal we can try to achieve at some point,” Hope said. “Definitely it would be great to be the first team to cross that 500 mark and I am sure we have the batting firepower to do it.”

One thing in West Indies’ favour in the quest for 500 is that two of their matches are at Trent Bridge – the venue where England flayed the record and its predecessor, 444 for 3 against Pakistan in 2016.

While the top order is packed with strokemakers – with Hope providing a classy and in-from anchor at No. 3 – it is Russell who could be the trump card when it comes to massive totals.

“He is just incredible – a freak of nature really,” Hope said. “I don’t really know what to say about Russ, he just hits it and once he hits it, it goes for six. He is a pleasure to be on the same team as him, I can tell you that. If you are on the field you are not sure what you are going to bowl at him. It is just nice to enjoy from the inside.” (Taken from ESPNCricinfo)