West Indies Inch Over The Line Against India
West Indies 230-9 (Charles 97) beat
India 229-7 (R Sharma 60) by 1 wicket
ODI tri-series, Jamaica
Report by John Pennington
West Indies made it two wins out of two in the One-Day International tri-series they are hosting after inching to a one-wicket victory over India in Jamaica.
Set 230 to win, they lost three early wickets before half-centuries from Johnson Charles and Darren Bravo revived their innings, only for India to fight back only to be denied by last-wicket pair Kemar Roach and Tino Best.
It was a match full of twists, turns and a pulled muscle that prevented Mahendra Singh Dhoni from taking the field after scoring 27.
Virat Kohli took charge and tried some Dhoni-esque tricks in rotating his bowlers and calling on Suresh Raina to good effect but in the end, he didn't have quite enough runs to play with.
Their score of 229 for seven owed plenty to Rohit Sharma's 60 in 89 balls, the opener maintaining a career average of more than 60 against West Indies by hitting four fours and a six.
After Shikhar Dhawan and Kohli had both fallen for 11, Dinesh Karthik (23), Raina (44), Dhoni and Ravindra Jadeja (15) helped India reach a competitive score.
Roach, Best and Darren Sammy all took two wickets apiece and Marlon Samuels had Karthik caught and bowled.
Chris Gayle scored a wonderful century to hurry West Indies towards victory against Sri Lanka in the tournament's opening game but made just 11 in nine ball before he cut Umesh Yadav into the hands of Raina.
Yadav then trapped Devon Smith in front without scoring and when Samuels was bowled by Bhuvneshwar Kumar for one, the home side were in trouble at 26 for three.
Charles went on to play a superb innings, given the circumstances and his relative inexperience, of 97 in 100 balls, with eight fours and four sixes to keep his side in the game.
The first crucial partnership came with Darren Bravo, whose 55 in 78 balls helped add 116 for the fourth wicket.
India's fightback, led by Ishant Sharma (2-51) and Ravichandran Ashwin (2-44) put West Indies under further pressure by removing Bravo, Kieron Pollard (4), Denesh Ramdin (4) and Sammy, who smacked 29 in 25 balls.
Charles was next to go, lofting Yadav (3-43) to Ishant Sharma at long-on as he aimed for one more big shot, and it looked, at 211 for eight, as if he might have thrown the game, as well as his wicket, away.
His luck was in, however, as despite Sunil Narine falling to Rain for five, Roach, unbeaten on 14 in 32 balls, and Best, not out on three in 10, calmly picked off the runs in ones and twos to make it a perfect start for the men in maroon.
© Cricket World 2013