FEROCIOUS opener Chris Gayle smashed the first double century in World Cup history as West Indies recorded a 73-run Duckworth-Lewis victory over Zimbabwe at Canberra yesterday.
The 35-year-old survived a first-over LBW shout before crashing 10 fours and 16 sixes in a knock of 215 from 147 deliveries, eclipsing South Africa batsman Gary Kirsten’s previous World Cup best of 188 not out against United Arab Emirates in 1996.
Gayle’s destructive innings was the third highest one-day international (ODI) score of all time and only the fifth double century scored in an ODI – the first by a non-Indian.
His stand of 372 with Marlon Samuels was also a record ODI partnership, usurping the 331 shared by India’s Rahul Dravid and Sachin Tendulkar against New Zealand in 1999.
Samuels also reached three figures and finished unbeaten on 133 as West Indies posted an imposing 372-2. Gayle fell on the final ball of the innings after top-edging slow right-armer Hamilton Masakadza to Elton Chigumbura.
He then claimed two wickets with his part-time off-spin to finish with 2-35 from six overs as Zimbabwe were routed for 289, falling 73 runs short of their rain-revised target. West Indies are second in Pool B after registering their second tournament victory.