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India vs West Indies, 1st T20I: Karthik, Kuldeep shine as hosts win by five wickets

India vs West Indies, 1st T20I: With an unbeaten 31, Karthik anchored a chase that had run into early turbulence, first with Manish Pandey and then with debutant Krunal Pandya who hit the winning runs.

cricket Updated: Nov 05, 2018 08:18 IST
Dhiman Sarkar
Dhiman Sarkar
Hindustan Times, Kolkata
India vs West Indies,India vs West Indies 2018,Rohit Sharma
Kolkata: Indian cricketers Krunal Pandya and Dinesh Karthik celebrate winning the 1st T20 match against West Indies at Eden Garden in Kolkata.(PTI)

This wasn’t skipper Rohit Sharma’s night but then Dinesh Karthik has shown in the last IPL that he too can stake claim to a piece of the Eden Gardens. With an unbeaten 31, the Kolkata Knight Riders’ skipper anchored a chase that had run into early turbulence, first with Manish Pandey and then with India debutant Krunal Pandya who hit the winning runs in this five-wicket victory.

Debutant Oshane Thomas and Carlos Brathwaite had rocked India, chasing 110 for their first T20 win against West Indies in four years, with some express stuff on a wicket that aided such bowling. Brathwaite set up KL Rahul’s dismissal, pitching it up before tempting him with a short ball and bowling a wicket maiden in the process. He also induced a poor stroke from Rishabh Pant.

Cranking it up, Thomas got one to go through Rohit and take a slight edge and then disturbed Shikhar Dhawan’s furniture. It was 4/45 when Pant fell, worse than West Indies who were 4/47, before Karthik and Pandey absorbed the pressure with a 38-run stand and before he and Pandya took India home.

Also Read: India vs West Indies, 1st T20 in Kolkata, Highlights: As It happened

Unlike India, the West Indies suffered early setbacks due to poor batting. The good balls from the fast bowlers --- like when debutant Khaleel Ahmed angled one across Denesh Ramdin and induced an edge or when he tempted Kieron Pollard with a ball that slanted away or the Jasprit Bumrah delivery that beat Darren Bravo but missed the outside edge ---- didn’t fetch wickets. India weren’t at their best while fielding either; KL Rahul and Krunal Pandya misfielding or misjudging shots and Rahul dropped a steep chance in the deep as well. But none of that mattered and the spinners hadn’t even came on.

Ramdin’s wooden feet gave Umesh Yadav his only wicket of the evening. Then the run-out that was symptomatic of all that was wrong with West Indies’ batting on Sunday. Shai Hope turned one to the on-side and ran but when Shimron Hetmeyer changed his mind midstream, both were running to the same end. Hetmeyer gave Karthik work when an attempt to swing at Bumrah gained more height than distance.

At 28/3 and gasping for breath, the West Indies were asphyxiated by Pandya and Kuldeep Yadav. Kieron Pollard hit Pandya for a six ---it took 39 balls for the next boundary to come --- but fell while trying an encore to one when he was forced to reach for one from the left-arm spinner.

Also Read: Bhuvneshwar pulls out of 1st T20I due to gastric problem

Man-of-the-Match Yadav had West Indies playing in hope. Dhawan made his first wicket happen with a running effort to pouch Darren Bravo. Rovman Powell couldn’t read a googly and Carlos Brathwaite went so deep in the crease that he could have felt Karthik’s breath from behind. When Pandya and Kuldeep Yadav bowled in tandem, West Indies lost four wickets for 29 runs in eight overs.

Fabian Allen, another debutant along with Khary Pierre, swung his bat but gave Ahmed his first T20 International wicket. Keemo Paul and Pierre took 16 off Umesh Yadav, who bowled the 19th over, and given how they bowled, West Indies were left ruing how underwhelming they were with the bat.

First Published: Nov 04, 2018 22:48 IST