Sports

India beat WI by 67 runs to win T20 series 2-1

MUMBAI, DEC 11 (AGENCIES) | Publish Date: 12/11/2019 1:07:43 PM IST

India beat West Indies by 67 runs to win the third T20 International and also the three-match series by 2-1 margin. India rode on big-hitting masterclass from Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul and Virat Kohli to clinch the T20I series decider against West Indies at the Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai on Wednesday.

Batting first, India scored 240 for 3 riding on KL Rahul’s 56-ball-91, Rohit Sharma’s 71 off 34 balls and skipper Virat Kohli’s unbeaten 70 off 29 balls.

In reply, West Indies managed 173 for 8 in 20 overs with Kieron Pollard scoring 68 off 39 balls.

India posted a mammoth total of 240 for 3 in 20 overs -- their third-highest total in T20I cricket -- to box West Indies out of the contest. KL Rahul top-scored with a 56-ball 91 and Rohit Sharma shone with a 34-ball 71. Captain Virat Kohli executed the finisher’s role to perfection by smashing an unbeaten 70 in just 29 balls.

West Indies suffered a huge blow even before they began their chase as big-hitting opener Evin Lewis did not bat after picking up a knee injury while fielding at the deep in Mumbai.

West Indies were restricted to 173 for 8 in 20 overs as Kieron Pollard’s single-handed effort (39-ball 68) couldn’t even take them closer to India’s total.

India win by 67 runs!

Kieron Pollard’s 68 wasn’t enough in the end, and Deepak Chahar’s 2/14 sealed victory for the hosts. 

Pacers Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammed Shami and Deepak Chahar shared 6 wickets between them after they reduced West Indies to 17 for 3 inside the powerplay. There was no coming back for West Indies from the early jolts. Kuldeep Yadav, who returned to the playing XI after a considerable gap, picked up 2 wickets but leaked 45 runs.

There were concerns surrounding India’s ability to set targets and defend them in T20I cricket in the lead up to the T20I series decider in Mumbai. Off the 7 defeats that they had suffered in 2019, 5 came when they were asked to bat first.

On Wednesday, Kieron Pollard had no hesitation to send India into bat after winning the toss.

However, India came in with a clear plan and executed it to perfection. While KL Rahul began the big-hitting spree against Jason Holder, Rohit Sharma took on the impressive Sheldon Cottrell in the left-armer’s 2nd over.

India posted 72 for 0 in the powerplay -- their 5th highest score in T20Is after the 1st 6-over mark.

Even after the end of the fielding restrictions, it was raining sixes as Rohit and Rahul made sure India went past the 100-run mark in just the 8th over.

The duo added 135 for the opening wicket after which Rishabh Pant walked out to bat at No. 3. The experiment failed as the under-pressure wicketkeeper-batsman was dismissed for 0.

However, Virat Kohli, who walked in at No. 4, was in his elements from the word go. It looked like he overshadowed Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul with his big-hitting display on Wednesday.

The Big 3 shared 19 boundaries and 16 sixes between them. A refreshing approach to respond to criticism!

Rohit becomes 1st Indian to hit 400 sixes in int’l cricket

Rohit Sharma has become the first Indian and the third player overall to hit 400 sixes in international cricket. Rohit did so during his blistering 34-ball 71 in the third T20I against the West Indies at the Wankhede Stadium here on Wednesday.

Only former Pakistan skipper Shahid Afridi and West Indies’ Chris Gayle have hit more sixes than Rohit in international cricket. The Indian T20I vice-captain is, however, the fastest to get there, having done so in his 354th match.

Gayle, with 534 sixes, holds the record of hitting the most number of sixes while Afridi, with 476 sixes, is second on the list.

Rohit’s 71 was part of a detsructive batting display by India which the hosts put up 240/3 in 20 overs after being put into bat. K.L. Rahul scored 91 while captain Virat Kohli smashed 70 off just 29 balls.

 

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