The West Indies defeated India by 5-wickets in a nerve-racking end to the 2nd Twenty/20 International at Warner Park in Basseterre, St Kitts and Nevis yesterday afternoon to level the 5-match series 1-1.
What looked like a comfortable chase of their target of 138 scored by India off 19.4 overs after being sent in to bat first, the match went down to a final-over no-ball by fast bowler, Avesh Khan.
India’s bowlers tightened the screws in the middle overs. It came down to 75 runs required off 72 balls, with nine wickets in hand. That equation became 27 runs off 18 balls, and then 10 off the last over in which wicket-keeper, Devon Thomas slammed the free-hit for six followed by a four to wrap up the chase and seal victory for the West Indies at 141-5 with four balls remaining.
Earlier in the day, left-arm, fast bowler, Obed Mc Coy achieved West Indies’ best bowling figures in Twenty/20 Internationals, and the best against India by any side in the format by taking 6-17 to spearhead India’s dismissal for 138 off 19.4 overs.
Opener, Brandon King then made 68 off 52 balls, ensuring that he held one end up in a chase of 139.
McCoy pushed India back in the death overs, where he got four of his six wickets after getting the first two inside the third over of the match. India crashed to 138 all out with two balls left in their innings after being 104 for 4 in the 14th over, with the scoring drying up considerably as the wickets fell. Just 37 runs came off the last seven overs.
The match started around the time it had originally been scheduled to end, after a three-hour hold-up caused by the delayed arrival of the luggage and kits of the teams from Trinidad, the venue of the 1st Twenty/20 International last Friday. Instead of 10.00 a. m, the toss finally took place at 1.00 p. m.
After all that waiting, the spectators got a significant bit of action off the very first ball of the match, as Rohit Sharma fended a lifter to short third man off the shoulder of his bat; the extra bounce McCoy gained turned out to be a decisive factor as the innings progressed. He bowled a wicket-maiden to start the match, mixing back-of-a-length and fuller deliveries to keep new batsman, Shreyas Iyer quiet over the next five balls.
In the third over, McCoy struck again, inviting Suryakumar Yadav to drive at, and edge to the wicket-keeper, a full-length delivery bowled form wide of the crease and angled across the right-hander.
The final scores: India 138 off 19.4 overs, the West Indies 141-5 off 19.2 overs.
The 3rd Twenty;20 International is being played in St Kitts and Nevis today at 12.00 p. m.