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Sports

Gayle's record-breaking ton puts England on brink

Chris Gayle's masterful World T20 century helped the West Indies to a convincing Group 1 win and broke several cricketing records in the process. This means England's upcoming game against South Africa is a must win.

He scored a century in the first ever T20 World Cup game, now Chris Gayle has the tournament's fastest ever ton after a brutal display of straight hitting put England to the sword.

Gayle's unbeaten 100 from 47 balls in the group opener also saw him break the record for most sixes in a T20 match with 11, and the most sixes in all international cricket (98). He is the first batsman to hit a century in two T20 World Cups.

The fluent innings helped the West Indies to a six-wicket defeat of England, who set the Windies a competitive-looking total of 182-6.

"It's good skills," Gayle said after the game. "It is what I practice, and I wanted to execute in the middle. The preparation has been really, really good."

"It was a good week with the batting," he added. "We were chasing a decent total. It was good to get set and take it from there."

The win puts the West Indies in a strong position in Group 1, where two teams will qualify for the final. They play Sri Lanka on Sunday in their second match.

England meanwhile will try to bounce back on Friday when they face South Africa. While it's not mathematically certain that England would exit the tournament if they lose, it would take an unlikely series of results to see them through.

dv/pfd (Reuters, AFP)