Rohit stars in India thrilling one-wicket win over West Indies


Cuttack:Rohit Sharma starred with a match-winning half-century as India clinched a thrilling one-wicket win against the West Indies in a low scoring first ODI of the five-match series at the Barabati Stadium here Tuesday.

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Chasing a target of 212, India made a good start with Virender Sehwag (20) and Parthiv Patel (12) slamming 37 runs in the first five overs. But fast bowlers Kemar Roach (3/46) and Andre Russell (2/29) ripped apart the top-order as India were reduced to 59/5 by the 12th over.

Rohit (72) and Ravindra Jadeja (38) then brought the innings back on track with their 83-run stand for the sixth wicket. Rohit, who is making a comeback to international cricket from a finger fracture, held the fort and smacked three fours and a huge six over long-off.

He was adjudged as the Man of the Match.

West Indies, however, came back into the match after Jadeja threw away his wicket, chasing a wide delivery from Keiron Pollard to Lendl Simmons at point. Rohit then joined forces with Ravichandran Ashwin (18) for fight back but a freak run-out cost Ashwin his wicket.

Rohit was bowled by leg-spinner Anthony Martin by a straight delivery that kissed his pads before crashing on to his stumps and in the next over, R.Vinay Kumar scooped West Indies skipper Darren Sammy to mid-off only to find Roach leaving the last wicket needing 11 runs to win from 28 balls.

Umesh Yadav (6 not out) and Varun Aaron (6 not out) then held their nerves and hit Sammy for two fours in the penultimate over as India reached 213/9 in 48.5 overs.

Earlier, a middle-order batting collapse restricted the West Indies to 211 for nine in 50 overs.

Asked to bat first, the West Indies made a faulty start losing first three wickets for 52 runs in the first 10 overs. Darren Bravo (60) and Danza Hyatt (31) added some stability to the West Indies innings with their 75-run stand, the only significant partnership of the innings. But the dismissal of Bravo triggered a collapse as the West Indies lost five wickets for just 46 runs.

The young Indian pace attack impressed with their steady line and length as Yadav and Aaron picked up two wickets each while Vinay Kumar bagged one. Spinners Ashwin, Jadeja and Suresh Raina bagged a wicket each.

The two pacers struck in tandem to reduce the West Indies to 52/3 in 10 overs. Bravo and Hyatt went ahead with the repair act cleverly by stealing the odd singles and punishing the lose deliveries for boundaries. Hyatt took 38 deliveries to get to double figures while Bravo survived two dropped chances during his valuable knock. At a time when the partnership grew strong, some mindless running between the wickets ended Hyatt’s innings.

Raina castled Bravo in the 35th over after having spilled a straight catch from the Trinidadian in the same over.

The big-hitting Pollard (13) struggled against the Indian spinners and gave an easy catch to Virat Kohli at long-on off Ashwin. Andre Russell made a 20-ball 22 down the order as the West Indies got past the 200-run mark.