- England v West Indies, T20 international, Trent Bridge
West Indies eye farewell triumph
Sunday June 24, Trent Bridge
Start time 1430 (1330 GMT)
West Indies must be gagging to board the flight home now. It has been a torrid tour: they haven't won, the weather has been poor and political discussions have again done plenty to overshadow their cricket. At least their last engagement is only 40 overs long; and the lottery of Twenty20 cricket perhaps provides their best chance of victory. They can take heart from their last T20 in England, in September 2011, when a far less experienced side than that which will line up at Trent Bridge beat the world champions in the format.
Like the ODI series, many people would start them as favourites because of the power of their hitters - West Indies have more guys that can clear the ropes than England. But they have to do some actual hitting in order to win and we saw little of their potential in the two one-day matches, when West Indies were quickly snuffed out by England's superb bowling attack.
It will be with the ball that England will look to put down a marker down, a few months out from the defence of their World Twenty20 crown in September. Jade Dernbach - whose pace and variations are best suited to T20 - could make an emotional appearance, less than a week after the death of his Surrey team-mate Tom Maynard. He held his nerve to win England the deciding T20I in Abu Dhabi in February and will look to push his case for inclusion in the other formats.
England's other issue is similar to that experienced at the start of the ODI series, in that Kevin Pietersen is absent. He will be a greater loss in T20 - leaving England without one player capable of regularly clearing the ropes; an essential facet of building a big T20 total. Alex Hales will come into the side and, as with Alastair Cook and Ian Bell in the ODIs, England hope another new opening partnership can flourish between Hales and Craig Kieswetter. They have three more T20Is before their World T20 campaign begins - not a lot of playing time to get things right.
West Indies: WLLWL
Players to watch
After making his England debut last August, Alex Hales has been built up as England's latest T20 specialist. He can certainly strike a long ball and now steps into the shoes of Pietersen after losing his place at opener to the same player in the UAE. He scored a half-century against West Indies at The Oval last September but has struggled for form this season and needs a score to cement his international credentials.
Kieron Pollard returns to Trent Bridge, the ground where he made a sparkling 47 from 25 balls last season as Somerset beat Nottinghamshire to reach the Friends Life t20 finals day. Pollard, who hit his first T20I half-century against Australia in March, looked in reasonable touch during his 41 in the second ODI at The Oval and, after Gayle, is West Indies' most dangerous hitter.
Stats and Trivia
- In seven T20Is against England, West Indies have won five and lost two - the country they have beaten most often. They have never beaten New Zealand, Sri Lanka or Zimbabwe.
- In the teams' last meeting, West Indies defended the second lowest total - 113 - in a T20 international. The lowest successfully defended score was made against West Indies: 105 by Zimbabwe at Port-of-Spain.
- England will be without the second highest run-scorer in T20 internationals for the first time. Kevin Pietersen's 1,176 runs are only bettered by Brendan McCullum's 1,352.
- Of those who have played over ten T20Is, Pietersen also has the third-highest average, at 37.93. Eoin Morgan's 40.06 is second, with Andrew Symonds' 48.14 topping the list.
England (probable) 1 Alex Hales, 2 Craig Kieswetter (wk), 3 Ravi Bopara, 4 Eoin Morgan, 5 Jonny Bairstow, 6 Jos Buttler, 7 Tim Bresnan, 8 Graeme Swann, 9 Stuart Broad (capt), 10 Jade Dernbach, 11 Steven Finn
West Indies (probable) 1 Dwayne Smith, 2 Chris Gayle, 3 Marlon Samuels, 4 Kieron Pollard, 5 Dwayne Bravo, 6 Darren Sammy (capt), 7 Andre Russell, 8 Denesh Ramdin (wk), 9 Tino Best, 10 Sunil Narine, 11 Ravi Rampaul
Pitch and conditions
Trent Bridge usually produces a belter for T20s, a hard, flat deck that will promote big hitting - exactly what West Indies need. The only caveat is the weather, which certainly affected the preparation of the Test match surface that proved slow and low with little movement on offer. Expect this pitch to play harder and quicker.
Alex Winter is an editorial assistant at ESPNcricinfo