Chris Gayle hit the fastest century in World Twenty20 cricket as West Indies thumped England by six wickets in their Group 1 match yesterday.

Gayle, who completed his century off 47 balls, remained unbeaten on 100 off 48 balls with five fours and 11 towering sixes to better his own record of a 50-ball hundred in the 2007 tournament in South Africa.

Marlon Samuels set the tone by hitting eight fours in his 37 before Gayle’s brutal hitting took West Indies to 183-4 in 18.1 overs in reply to what earlier appeared to be a competitive England total of 182-6.

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