Gayle, Lara among WI legends celebrating team’s historic win at the Gabba | Cricket

The West Indies captured the imagination of the cricket world with a sensational win over Australia at the Gabba on Monday. Despite the likes of Jason Holder and Kyle Mayers missing from the squad, a young West Indies side filled with inexperienced players managed to topple the reigning world Test champions in their own home ground by eight runs.

Brian Lara, Carl Hooper and Ian Bishop were all part of the last West Indies side to have beaten Australia in Australia in 1997(twitter)

The victory was one that celebrated by even some Australian fans, with memories of the days when West Indies used to dominate world cricket being recalled by many. Some of those who were part of those sides and some of the greats who happened to play in eras in which the West Indies were tragically sliding in the longest format expressed their happiness on social media and other platforms.

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Batting great and former captain Brian Lara was part of the Fox Cricket commentary panel when Shamar Joseph took the last Australian wicket and he was in tears as the West Indies celebrated. “It’s unbelievable. 27 years to beat Australia in Australia. Young, inexperienced, written off… this West Indies team and West Indies cricket can stand tall today. Today is a big day for West Indies cricket,” he said.

Meanwhile, Lara’s former teammate and fellow former West Indies captain Carl Hooper could be seen breaking down after Joseph took the last wicket. In a video that has since gone viral on X, Hooper can be seen walking around the room with his hands on his head and wiping tears in the ABC Sports broadcasters’ room after the winning moment. Former fast bowler and commentator Ian Bishop also made a number of posts on his Twitter handle. Lara, Hooper and Bishop were all part of the last West Indies team to have beaten Australia in a Test match in Australia back in 1997.

Chris Gayle and Dwayne Bravo, both of whom had successful Test careers and were captains of the West Indies before establishing themselves as pioneering T20 cricketers, also made their happiness known on Instagram. Former West Indies white ball captains Kieron Pollard and Nicholas Pooran also reacted to the momentous occassion. Tagging Joseph, Pooran said, “What a day. Unreal Stuff” on Instagram. “Team Work. Congratulations all,” said Pollard on his Instagram page.

Chris Gayle hailed Joseph on Instagram
Chris Gayle hailed Joseph on Instagram

Australia had been cruising towards the victory target of 216 early on day four of the day-night second test until an injured Joseph, playing his first test series, returned to the field and shocked the world champions with a fiery showcase of fast bowling. The 24-year-old saved his best for last, uprooting the off-stump of tailender Josh Hazlewood (0) with sheer speed before dashing across the Gabba outfield, thumping his chest in celebration with his team mates.

The victory comes at an otherwise low ebb for West Indies cricket, after the islanders failed in 2023 to qualify for the 50-over World Cup for the first time. Guyana native Joseph, who sensationally had Smith caught in Adelaide off his first ball in test cricket, has been signed by Dubai Capitals for the International League T20 tournament.

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