Ravi Bishnoi, Rohit Sharma and Surya help India beat West Indies, Pooran's 61 in vain
Brief Scores: India 162/4 (18.5) (R Sharma 40, I Kishan 35, R Chase 2-14) beat West Indies 157/7 (20) (N Pooran 61, K Mayers 31, R Bishnoi 2-17, H Patel 2-37) by 6 wickets.
The two-time T20 World Champions, West Indies took on India in the first game of the three-match T20 series at Eden Gardens, Kolkata. After a one-sided ODI series, where the tourists had been whitewashed, West Indies would like to forget it quickly and focus on T20Is.
The 22-yards at Eden Gardens:
The pitch looked good for the batting, might slow down a bit in the second innings, but the dew factor later in the game could push the captains to elect to chase.
Ind opted to bowl, Ravi Bishnoi earned debut:
Indian captain Rohit Sharma won the toss and elected to bowl first. Also, hosts had handed the leg-spinner Ravi Bishnoi debut cap. West Indies, on the other hand, played with some relatively new faces in the team.
Pooran-Myers settled the innings after early wicket; WI 44-1 after powerplay:
Opener Brandon King began the West Indies innings with a splendid boundary but soon perished as Bhuvneshwar Kumar found King’s leading-edge into the hands of point fielder.
Nicholas Pooran and Kyle Myers tried to steady the West Indies ship and added 47 runs for the 2nd wicket. Pooran held one end and Mayers made sure they are not running out of runs in the first six overs. West Indies reached 44-1 at the end of the powerplay.
Chahal-Bishnoi reduced WI at 96-5 after 15-overs
Veteran leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal was introduced soon but was welcomed by a six from Pooran. Soon, India leggie made a comeback and dismissed Kyle Myers thanks to the umpire’s call going into the host’s favour.
Pooran on the other side, kept the scoreboard ticking, but Roston Chase found struggling a bit. Ravi Bishnoi, the debutant leg-spinner, foxed Roston Chase and grabbed his maiden T20I wicket. Three balls later, Bishnoi sent Rovman Powell as well back in the hut reducing West Indies to 74-4.
At number 6, Akeal Hosein was promoted ahead of skipper Kieron Pollard but couldn't leave a lasting impact and soon caught out to Deepak Chahar on his bowling.
Pooran-Pollard propelled West Indies to 157/6 in 20-overs
Nicholas Pooran, after pocketing INR 10.75 cr in the IPL auction the other day, brought up his 6th T20I fifty in just 38-deliveries. Before holing out to Virat Kohli at long-off, Pooran added 45 runs with Pollard for the sixth wicket. Harshal Patel got his first wicket of the game. The slow over rate haunted India and were forced to put an extra fielder inside the 30-yard ring for the last 12-balls as per the recent rule changes.
Captain Kieron Pollard took his wild character out and smashed the ball all around. He struck two fours and one six. Some decent death bowling from India bowlers kept the West Indies to 157 in the given 20-overs.
Rohit Sharma gave India a perfect start; India 59/0 at the end of powerplay
West Indies aimed to pick early wickets and put India on backfoot, but the opening partnership of Rohit Sharma and Ishan Kishan started the innings very well. Rohit Sharma continued his love affair with the Eden Gardens and kept smashing West Indies bowlers.
In no time, India were able to put 50 runs on board. Ishan Kishan was playing a second fiddle to the skipper Rohit Sharma.
West Indies spinners slowed down Indian innings; India 120/4 after 15-overs
Rohit's fiery innings (40 off 19) came to an end by acrobatic efforts from Odean Smith at the boundary. Roston Chase dried up the runs during his spell and grabbed Ishan Kishan's wicket at the score of 93. Ishan Kishan scored 35 runs off 42 balls. A scratchy inning, indeed.
The lack of runs pushed Virat Kohli to try out different ways to score runs. He danced down to Fabien Allen and tried hitting over the long-off but caught out to Pollard. India stuck at 96/3
Suryakumar Yadav along with Rishabh Pant tries to put India on track after losing quick wickets. India still needed more than 50 runs.
India secure the chase by 6-wickets and lead the series 1-0
After a few quiet overs, Suryakumar Yadav with two remarkable shots, one through the covers for a boundary and one over the fine leg fence for half a dozen eased the pressure and put the equation in run a ball.
The pressure was off the shoulder and India didn’t waste too much time. And just like those old days, Venkatesh Iyer finished it off in style with a huge six and India won the first T20I against West Indies.
Ravi Bishnoi was adjudged as Player of the Match for his 2/17 from 4 overs.
What to look forward to
West Indies will try to come back in the series after the poor show while India will look to seal the series. West Indies might need to regroup as a team think where all they can improve before the 2nd T20I
The second T20I between India and West Indies will take place on February 18th on the same ground, Eden Gardens.
Here are some of the top twitter reactions from INDvsWI, 1st T20I, Kolkata: