West Indies win thriller
Jermaine Lannaman, Gleaner Writer
Opener Johnson Charles and fast bowler Kemar Roach were the stars of the show yesterday for the West Indies, who recorded a tense one-wicket win over India in the second match of the Celkon Mobile Tri-Nation one-day international series at Sabina Park.
The 24-year-old Charles made a typical boundary-studded 97, while Roach, who was celebrating his birthday, held his nerve in the final overs to help the West Indies reach their victory target of 230 for nine in 47.4 overs. India had earlier made 229 for seven off 50 overs.
The victory, which was witnessed by a decent-sized crowd, was the West Indies' second in as many matches and has now put them firmly on top of the series standings with nine points.
They gained a bonus point last Friday over Sri Lanka after winning by six wickets inside 40 overs.
India, in the meantime, who will play Sri Lanka tomorrow at the same venue, beginning at 9:30 a.m., are also without a point.
The day began with West Indies leaving out captain Dwayne Bravo and fast bowler Ravi Rampaul due to injury and bringing in Devon Smith and Tino Best. Kieron Pollard captained the team for the first time.
Pollard's first duty, that of the toss, then went in his favour and recognising that the pitch had some moisture, he decided to insert India. And what a move it turned out to be. The West Indies, led by Roach, began sharply and in the 10th over had the visitors struggling at 39 for two.
Roach, bowling at his usual steady pace, had opener Shikhar Dhawan caught and bowled for 11 with the score on 25, while 14 runs later, former captain Darren Sammy joined the action and had Virat Kohli caught for 11 by Gayle, who at first slip dived low to his right.
There was, however, to be somewhat of a mini-revival for the Indians as thanks to in-form opener Rohit Sharma, who top-scored with 60 and Denish Karthik, who made 23, the score was advanced to 98 in the 26th over. But the West Indies fought back and limited India to a makeable target.
West Indies begun their run-chase disastrously as with only 26 runs on the board they found themselves three wickets down following the dismissals of Chris Gayle, Devon Smith and Marlon Samuels.
However, with Charles growing in confidence, he found a capable ally in Darren Bravo and two put on 116 for the fourth wicket, which brought back the West Indies into the game and laid the foundation for the eventual result. Charle slammed four sixes and eight fours before he was second to last man out with the score on 211 for eight in the 40th over, while Bravo, showing patience and temperament, contributed 55, including five fours and a six.
The winning runs, which came after a brief flurry from Sammy, who made a 25-ball 29, were crafted by Roach and last-man Best, who ended on three not out off 10 balls.
Needing 10 to win when they came together, the two batted carefully in playing defensive shots and taking singles where they were available to eke out a nail-biting win.
RG Sharma c Charles b Sammy 60S Dhawan c & b Roach 11V Kohli c Gayle b Sammy 11KD Karthik c & b Samuels 23SK Raina c wkp Ramdin b Roach 44MS Dhonib Best 27RA Jadeja b Best 15R Ashwin not out 5B Kumar not out 11Extras (b 5, lb 6, w 9, nb 2) 22Total (7 wkts in 50 overs) 229
Did not bat : I Sharma, UT Yadav
Fall of wickets: 1-25 (Dhawan, 4.2 overs), 2-39 (Kohli, 9.1), 3-98 (Karthik, 25.3), 4-124 (RG Sharma, 30.6), 5-182 (Raina, 42.6), 6-197 (Dhoni, 46.1), 7-212 (Jadeja, 48.4).
Bowling: K. Roach 10-2-41-2 (3w), T. Best 10-0-52-2 (2nb, 4w), D. Sammy 10-3-41-2, K. Pollard 1-0-8-0 (1w), S. Narine 10-0-56-0 (1w), M. Samuels 9-1-20-1.
C. Gayle c Raina b Yadav 11J . Charles c I Sharma b Yadav 97D .S. Smith lbw b Yadav 0M. Samuels b Kumar 1DM Bravo c Dhawan b Ashwin 55K . Pollardc Karthik b I Sharma 4D . Ramdin (wkp) b Ashwin 4D . Sammy c Ashwin b I Sharma 29K . Roach not out 14S. Narine c Dhawan b Raina 5T . Best not out 3Extras (lb 2, w 5) 7Total (9 wkts of 47.4 overs) 230
Fall of wickets: 1-13 (Gayle, 1.4 ov), 2-25 (Smith, 3.1 ov), 3-26 (Samuels, 4.1 ov), 4-142 (Bravo, 27.5 ov), 5-155 (Pollard, 30.2 ov), 6-161 (Ramdin, 31.4 ov), 7-197 (Sammy, 36.5 ov), 8-211 (Charles, 40.2 ov), 9-220 (Narine, 43.2 ov).
Bowling: B Kumar 7 -1- 36 -1 (1w), UT Yadav 9.4 -2-43-3 (2w), RA Jadeja 10-1-50-0, I Sharma 9-0-51-2 (2w), R Ashwin 10-0-44-2, SK Raina 2-1-4-1.
Result: West Indies won by one wicket.
Points: West Indies 4, India 0
Man of the Match: Johnson Charles (West Indies)