Sharma Guides India To Series Victory

Sharma Guides India To Series Victory
Sharma Guides India To Series Victory
©REUTERS/Siphiwe Sibeko (SOUTH AFRICA - Tags: SPORT CRICKET) Picture Supplied by Action Images

India 228-7 (Sharma 86no) beat
West Indies 225-8 (Russell 92) by three wickets
Third One-Day International, Antigua

Rohit Sharma scored an unbeaten half-century as India were made to work hard for a three-wicket victory over the West Indies in the third One-Day International in Antigua.

The win, which came in spite of them being reduced to 92 for six in pursuit of 226 to win, put them into an unassailable 3-0 lead in the series.

Both sides struggled early on with the bat and only a superb innings of 92 in 64 balls from Andre Russell gave the West Indies a fighting chance as they were struggling on 96 for seven themselves.

All-rounder Russell, making his first appearance of the series, struck eight fours and five sixes and together with Carlton Baugh (36) pieced the innings back together after it had been torn apart by the Indian bowlers, for whom Amit Mishra excelled once again with figures of three for 28.

In reply, India lost Shikhar Dhawan (4), Virat Kohli (0) and Subramaniam Badrinath (11) - the latter to a needless run out - and the game was in the balance.

Parthiv Patel continued his good form with 46 at the top of the order, before he, Suresh Raina (3) and Yusuf Pathan (1) fell in quick succession to leave India in some trouble.

Sharma came to their rescue, stroking five fours and two sixes in 91 balls and he found a willing ally in Harbhajan Singh, wh made 41 in 64 balls.

His dismissal, caught by Baugh off Russell, handed the West Indies one last chance to get back into the game but it was taken away from them by Praveen Kumar, who thumped 25 not out in 15 balls to put paid to the home side's efforts.

Despite Sharma's match-winning effort, Russell was named as the man of the match.

The fourth match of five is at the same venue - the Sir Viv Richards Stadium - on 13th June.

© Cricket World 2011