End of an era as West Indies' T20 heroes exit World Cup race

Veteran all-rounder Dwayne Bravo announces retirement from international cricket

The West Indies - the first great T20 team of this era - saw their title defence at the 2021 T20 World Cup come to an end following a 20-run defeat to Sri Lanka on Thursday.

The Sri Lankans batted first and posted an imposing 189-3. The Windies bat all the way down to number 10 but this World Cup has been about calculated batting - more than power hitting - and that proved to be case again as the defending champions could only manage 169-8 despite a fighting 81 not out from Shimron Hetmyer.

Veteran T20 stars like Chris Gayle, Dwayne Bravo and Kieron Pollard thus witnessed the end of a great era - the West Indies had won the T20 World Cup titles in 2012 and 2016, and were pioneers of the format at the international level.

After the match, Bravo announced he will retire from international cricket.

"I think the time has come, I've had a very good career. To represent the West Indies for 18 years, had some ups and downs," Bravo, 38, said in a post-match interview.

"But as I look back at it I'm very grateful to represent the region and the Caribbean people for so long.

"To win three ICC trophies ... One thing I am proud about is that the era of cricketers we had. We were able to make a name for ourselves on the global stage and not only do that but have silverware to show for it."

The West Indies are out the race for a spot in the semi-finals and face Australia in their final Super 12 match on Saturday.

Updated: November 5th 2021, 9:32 AM