World Cup relief for Windies

21 March 2018 13:02:50 EST

West Indies booked their place at the 2019 World Cup after they defeated Scotland by five runs on the Duckworth-Lewis-Stern method.

The two-time champions of the 50-over tournament reached the quarter-finals in 2011 and 2015, but needed to go through the Super Six qualification process ahead of next year's World Cup in England.

Three wins and a defeat had put them in the driving seat ahead of their fifth game against the Scots in Harare on Wednesday.

But the Windies required the help of a controversial umpire decision and the weather to edge them past their plucky opponents.

We had to play to expectation - there was pressure in every game and the guys really put their hands up.

Jason Holder

Indeed they were toiling on 2-2 until Evin Lewis and Marlon Samuels hit 66 and 51 respectively to put on a stand of 121 to steady the ship.

However, Scots bowlers Safyaan Sharif and Brad Wheal both took three wickets apiece as the West Indies eventually finished on just 198 with eight balls of their innings still remaining.

Scotland were reduced to 25-3 in response, before Richie Berrington left them within 74 runs of victory with 14.4 overs remaining courtesy of his 33.

His harsh lbw dismissal to a ball that replays appeared to show was heading down the leg side swung the game in the West Indies favour as the rainfall which quickly followed left the Scots narrowly trailing on the DLS method.

As play was unable to resume it was the West Indies who secured the win to take them through and captain Jason Holder was a relieved man.

He said: "I'm extremely pleased to get through to the World Cup. We've been through a lot in the last two years.

"We had to play to expectation - there was pressure in every game and the guys really put their hands up. I'm really pleased to get over the line but my thoughts go out to Scotland for how they've played in this tournament."

Scotland now look set to miss out on a fourth World Cup appearance as the hosts Zimbabwe look certain to take the second and final qualifying place with a victory against the already-eliminated United Arab Emirates on Thursday.

Zimbabwe are 1/10 to win the qualifier, while the UAE are priced at 6/1 and the West Indies are available at 20/1 to win the 2019 World Cup.

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