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Mar 26, 2012 at 08:37am IST

Sammy blitz in vain as Aus level series

St. Lucia: Australia held their nerve to beat West Indies by 30 runs on Sunday and secure a 2-2 draw in the five-match series despite Darren Sammy's boundary-studded 84 off 50 balls.

Sammy slammed six fours and six sixes to lift West Indies from the doldrums of 118-7 to give his team a chance of chasing down Australia's formidable 281/9 off 50 overs.

But the effort went in vain, the right-hander was the last out as his team were bowled out for 251 off 47.2 overs.

Sammy's blitz in vain as Aus level series

Sammy's fighting knock of 84 off 50 balls went in vain as Australia won the last ODI by 30 runs.

Brett Lee, who claimed two early wickets to rock the West Indies, led the visitors with 3-42. Captain Shane Watson (2-44), Xavier Doherty (2-60) and Clint McKay (2-68) also chipped in.

David Warner (69), Shane Watson (66) and Peter Forrest (53) had earlier anchored Australia's total while Andre Russell's 4-61 led the hosts.

The West Indies' pursuit was quickly undermined by the pace and accuracy of veteran Lee, who prized out Johnson Charles and Marlon Samuels without scoring.

Charles skewed a short ball back to Lee while Samuels sparred to the wicketkeeper Matthew Wade and it was 5-2 in the third over.

When Darren Bravo also edged to Wade off Clint McKay, the hosts were in further trouble at 37-3.

Opener Adrian Barath tried to fight back in scoring 42, but Australia kept a firm grip. Dwayne Bravo (19) lofted Watson to extra cover and Barath, after striking six fours, top-edged a slog-sweep at Doherty to leave the West Indies reeling again at 76-5.

But the sell-out crowd of 14,000 soon got back its voice when Sammy and Andre Russell began to forge a powerful partnership.

Sammy notched his half-century off 20 balls, equaling his own record for the fastest ever one-day fifty by a West Indian, and the pair shared a thrilling eighth-wicket partnership of 101.

Doherty made the telling breakthrough when Russell was lbw on the DRS review, prodding forward to the left-arm spinner.

Sammy continued to hit out and give West Indies hope but he was left with too much to do.

Earlier, Australia got an assured start from Warner and Watson after Sammy won the toss and chose to bowl.

Left-hander Warner lashed 10 fours and a six in his first half century of the series. He and Watson shared an opening stand of 118 in 19.5 overs.

The hosts broke through when spinner Narine claimed Warner to a top-edged slog-sweep that looped to short third man, but Forrest and Watson added a further 43 for the second wicket to set a sound platform for the Aussies.

Watson eventually fell to Russell, ramping a catch to third man at 161-2. Roach claimed George Bailey (19) and Narine removed pinch-hitter Lee (12) soon after a brief rain interruption to stall the Australian charge.

Bailey chipped a full toss to mid-on while Lee was bowled by a big off-break.

There was more success for West Indies as Forrest fell to Russell, who then removed David Hussey first ball at 241-6. Left-handers Michael Hussey and Matthew Wade provided some late momentum in a stand of 38.

Hussey hit 25 off 28 balls while wicket-keeper Wade lashed two sixes and a four in 26 off 17 deliveries.

The two-match Twenty20 International series begins at the same venue on Tuesday.

(Full scorecard)

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