Jos Buttler scored a brutal, career-best 150 and Eoin Morgan added a brilliant century as England hit a new record for sixes scored while piling on 418 in the fourth one-day international against West Indies.
Buttler was in devastating form, hitting 12 maximums in a scintillating knock, while Morgan added six of his own as England cleared the ropes 24 times in Grenada – breaking the innings record set by their opponents in the first match of the series.
After being asked to bat first, England batted vibrantly throughout, but stepped on the gas in glorious fashion in the last 10 overs, during which they flogged the home attack for 154.
What a ridiculous innings!— England Cricket (@englandcricket) February 27, 2019
💪 Most sixes ever in an ODI innings (24)
🥇 @josbuttler's highest ODI score (156 from 79 balls)
💯 @Eoin16's 12th ODI century
🙌 Fourth time we have scored more than 400
Scorecard: https://t.co/1Zj9rYogrm#WIvENG pic.twitter.com/6qOBCcdrwR
Morgan’s 103 would ordinarily be enough to dominate the headlines but his effort ended up the supporting act to a world-class assault by Buttler, who scored his first 50 in 45 deliveries and his next hundred in a dizzying 32-ball period.
Morgan and Buttler came together at 165 for three in the 26th over and between them converted a solid foundation into a vertiginous target.
Their partnership lasted just under 21 overs but swelled to 204 runs as they bullied the home attack.
Home captain Jason Holder, whose decision to bowl first may come back to haunt him, was treated harshest of all, shipping 88 from seven overs, while leg-spinner Devendra Bishoo was allowed to get through only four of his allocation at a hefty price of 48.
England had earlier got off to a sprinter’s start despite the absence of the injured Jason Roy. With the Surrey man nursing a minor hamstring problem Alex Hales moved back up to opener and joined Jonny Bairstow in a century partnership.
The duo upset the Windies’ bowling plans, forcing Holder to use five different bowlers in the powerplay. Neither went on to make the innings-defining contribution, that would be left for Buttler, but Bairstow’s 56 and Hales’ 82 were hugely important tone-setting efforts.
They fell with bigger prizes in sight, Oshane Thomas and Ashley Nurse the successful bowlers, with Joe Root the only top-order batsman to miss out when he feathered a cut behind for five.
That led to the superlative stand between Morgan and Buttler. Both men worked their way through the gears in style, with the skipper becoming the first batsman to make 6,000 ODI runs for England in the process.
The pair both reached fifty with sixes and used that as a springboard for further fireworks. Buttler’s second 50 occupied a mere 15 balls, and his third 50 only 17. Morgan, meanwhile, was made to look a dawdler by comparison but was batting with huge reserves of both purpose and power.
Brathwaite, at one stage sitting on miserly figures of four overs for nine runs, suffered like the rest once England’s power hitters hit their stride but with a couple of wickets.
Buttler’s memorable knock ended with two balls remaining – he had already been dropped on 93 and caught off a no-ball on 107 – and Ben Stokes departed to the final ball of the innings.