Prasidh Krishna gets player of the series for his 9 wickets at an average of 7.55
Brief Scores: India 265 all-out in 50 overs (Shreyas Iyer 80, Pant 56, Deepak Chahar 38, Holder 4/34, Joseph 2/54) beat West Indies 169 all-out in 37.1 overs (Smith 36, Pooran 34, Krishna 3/27, Siraj 3/29) by 96 runs
The final game of the ongoing India versus West Indies ODI series took place at the Narendra Modi Stadium on Friday, February 11. After taking an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series and after Prasidh Krishna rattled the batting lineup of the opponents in the second ODI and helped the team win the game by 44 runs, Rohit Sharma and Co entered the game looking to achieve a series sweep.
West Indies, on the other hand, looked to avert a whitewash after losing the first two games by disappointing margins. Having already sealed the series, skipper Rohit Sharma utilized the opportunity to juggle and experiment as he entered with four swaps in the playing XI.
Shikhar Dhawan finally got to make his comeback, coming in as a replacement for KL Rahul, while Shreyas Iyer, Deepak Chahar and Kuldeep Yadav replaced Deepak Hooda, Shardul Thakur and Yuzvendra Chahal. On the contrary, the tourists replaced Akeal Hosein with Hayden Walsh. With a stroke of fortuitous luck, India won the game and chose to bat first on a perfectly suitable pitch for batting in an ODI game.
India’s bad omen from the 2nd ODI continues
Playing the old and well-settled left-right opening combination of Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma, India started proceedings in the 3rd ODI. The duo has dominated the ODI format over the years and needed just 22 runs for completing 5000-runs as a pair in the format. Unfortunately, the quest failed to get fulfilled in the given match, when Rohit Sharma got dismissed cheaply for 13 runs. He got bowled trying to push for a drive to Alzarri Joseph, but the ball took the inside edge and uprooted the middle stump.
Not an ideal series for the Indian skipper with the bat, after getting dismissed for low scores consecutively. In the same over, Alzarri struck again and dismissed the new batter Virat Kohli, who departed for a two-ball duck in an attempt to flick the ball for a boundary, instead, tickled it towards the wicketkeeper Shai Hope’s gloves. Kohli walked towards the pavilion with an embarrassing smile without even bothering to change the scoreboard. Alzarri Joseph took down two big fishes - Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli - including a maiden over and put West Indies on the drivers’ seat.
On the other end, Dhawan who made a comeback to the Indian team after recovering from COVID-19 looked slightly uncomfortable and took time to settle in the middle. He scored his first run with a six on the 15th delivery he faced. However, he continued to struggle and eventually gave his wicket to Odean Smith after edging the ball towards Jason Holder stationed at wide slip and departed for 10 runs off 26 deliveries.
Odean Smith took his first wicket of the game, while the Indian team was pushed to the back seat after conceding the third wicket. India were again seen struggling, after the failure of the top-order, as the scorecard reflected 42/3 after the first powerplay, with Shreyas Iyer and new batter Rishabh Pant on the crease.
Pant-Iyer pair revitalize India’s early falings
New batters - Shreyas Iyer and Rishabh Pant - with a tremendous amount of pressure were in the middle, with the first task to resurrect the Indian innings. The duo set onto the mission with singles and occasional boundaries and WI bowlers too conceded extras with no-balls and wides as both the batters kept the scoreboard ticking. The partnership began to form between them as the Indian scoreboard reached the 100-run mark and looked slowly to get back on track. After 20 overs, India’s score was 88/3 with Shreyas and Pant on the crease and a fifty-run partnership between them for the fourth wicket.
Soon as India reached the 150-run mark, the hosts lost their fourth wicket, when Rishabh Pant, batting on 56 runs off 54 balls, gloved the ball to wicketkeeper Shai Hope off Hayden Walsh’s delivery, who broke the 110-run partnership between the two batters. India’s score was 154/4 after 30 overs, with a run-rate of 5.07 and new batter Suryakumar Yadav on the crease with Shreyas Iyer batting unbeaten on 61* runs.
India lost their fifth wicket as Suryakumar Yadav fell in a trap laid out by Fabian Allen trying to loft the ball inside-out over extra cover, only to get caught by Shamarh Brooks at backward point after scoring 6 runs.
India’s lower-order rises to the occasion
Once again, India’s lower-order came to the fore when the hosts lost two quick wickets of Pant and Suryakumar Yadav. Washington Sundar, along with Shreyas Iyer, who was batting under immense pressure kept the run-flow intact. However, Walsh provided the visitors another breakthrough by dismissing Iyer on 80 (111) in the 38th over as India lost their 6th wicket with the score on 187/6. Iyer’s knock put the side on course for posting a respectable total.
After Iyer’s departure, new batter Deepak Chahar came and played a run-a-ball knock of 38 runs and added decent numbers to the scoreboard to take India towards the 250-run mark. He was later dismissed by Jason Holder, who took four wickets, all of them of the Indian lower-order batters as India finished at 265 in 50 overs after getting all out on the final delivery of their innings.
Pacers put hosts in command, as visitors’ top-order stumbles
While India put up a decent total of 265 runs, West Indies were supposed to avoid the hassle they went through in the last game. The jinx seemed to have followed their fate as they suffered their first blot during the chase in the fourth over. Mohammed Siraj drew the first wicket for India with a beautifully bowled seamer trapping Shai Hope leg before wicket for a paltry 5 runs off 9 deliveries.
The next wicket came rather shortly as Deepak Chahar, playing his first game of the series, with a perfectly pitched seamer got the edge of Brandon King’s bat towards Suryakumar Yadav at second slip. Chahar’s onslaught caused another damage to WI after he trapped new batter Sharmarh Brooks for a three-ball duck. WI’s innings downfall was similar to that of the Indian team, especially how all the top batters departed cheaply on both sides.
Despite the top-order ruckus, West Indies managed to score 47/3 after the first powerplay, with Darren Bravo and skipper Nicholas Pooran in the middle.
Prasidh-Kuldeep demolish visitors’ middle-order
While the visitors were making inroads after a top-order collapse, they sustained another damage in the form of Darren Bravo who departed for 20 runs after struggling for runs throughout the ODI series. Prasidh struck again with a crucial wicket of the man in form, Jason Holder, thereby sending half the WI team back to the pavilion at the score of 75 runs.
Kuldeep Yadav playing his first game of the series too followed suit and quickly got into the business with his first prey Fabian Allen who departed for a golden duck. Kuldeep dismissed another big fish of the WI lot, i.e., their skipper Nicholas Pooran who returned to the pavilion after having scored 34 runs off 39 deliveries. West Indies were mostly out of the winning contention with their score reeling at 82/7 after the skipper’s departure.
The rest of the job was done by Prasidh Krishna and Mohammed Siraj, both of whom broke the back of the opposition lower-order, especially after Alzarri Joseph and Odean Smith showed some resistance.
Both the batters put up a 40-run stand and took the WI total past 100 runs. However, the partnership didn’t last long to nurture, when Siraj put an end to the outstanding knock of Smith, who departed for 34 runs off 18 balls.
India’s bowlers had to rather toil hard for the last two wickets, that of Joseph and Hayden Walsh, who together put up a 46-run stand for the 9th wicket. They took the WI total past 150 runs, despite finding themselves to the brink of a series whitewash.
The last two wickets came after 14 overs, i.e., in the 37th over when Siraj struck for his third wicket and dismissed Walsh for 13 runs off 38 balls. Prasidh Krishna performed the final rites of WI’s innings with a short-pitched delivery to Joseph which he guided towards square-leg straight into Virat Kohli’s safe pair of hands.
West Indies were bundled at 169 runs as India registered a comprehensive victory by 96 runs and handed a series whitewash to the visitors.
Prasidh Krishna and Mohammed Siraj chipped in with three wickets, while Kuldeep Yadav and Deepak Chahar took a couple of wickets each.
IND vs WI, 3rd ODI: Player of the match
Shreyas Iyer lifted the player of the match award for his masterful knock of 80 runs off 111 deliveries under tremendous pressure. He pulled the game in India’s favour when the hosts struggled to get a partnership during their innings.
Prasidh Krishna was adjudged the player of the series for his haul of 9 wickets from three games with a four-fer and three-fer to account for.
India will now lock horns with West Indies in a three-match T20I series that kicks off on February 16 at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata.
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