By Elton Gomes
A terrific all-round performance by Virat Kohli and his men saw India crush the West Indies by 224 runs in the fourth One Day International (ODI) at the Brabourne Stadium in Mumbai on Monday. India now lead the five-match series 2-1, with one match left.
Left-arm pacer Khaleel Ahmed (3-13) and spinner Kuldeep Yadav (3-42) put on outstanding performances as India bundled out the Windies for 153 in just 36.2 overs.
Chasing a mammoth target of 378, the visitors got off to a poor start after Bhuvneshwar Kumar dismissed Chandrapaul Hemraj (14) in the fifth over. Shai Hope (0) and opener Kieran Powell (4) lost their wickets early, thanks to some brilliant fielding from Yadav and skipper Virat Kohli.
West Indies were definitely feeling the heat, as they were 20 for three at one point. Khaleel ruthlessly tore apart the visitors’ middle-order. The youngster removed Shimron Hetmyer (13), Marlon Samuels (18), and Rovman Powell (1) in quick succession, allowing India to tighten its grip on the match.
Spinners Kuldeep Yadav and Ravindra Jadeja then easily saw off the Windies’ lower order, which gave India a comprehensive victory. Khaleel (3/13) and Kuldeep (3/42) clinched three wickets each while Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Ravindra Jadeja bagged a wicket a piece.
West Indies had caused all sorts of problems for India in the first three ODIs owing to their strong batting. But in the fourth ODI, the Windies were badly affected by poor running. Additionally, Khaleel Ahmed’s blistering bowling saw the Windies fall like nine pins.
Earlier, India decided to bat first after winning the toss. Rohit Sharma scored 162 runs while Ambati Rayudu scored 100 to put together 211 runs for the third wicket.
In the 378 run chase, besides strong bowling efforts, India performed well in the the fielding department too as Kohli and Kuldeep inflicted early rapidfire run outs; Rohit took three catches in the slips, and M.S. Dhoni took the bails off in 0.08 seconds to send Keemo Paul back.
Rohit Sharma becomes second-most prolific six-hitter
Mumbai’s very own Rohit Sharma reached yet another milestone during his knock against the West Indies in the 4th ODI. Sharma became the second highest six-hitter for India in the one-day format. Sharma overtook Indian legend Sachin Tendulkar in the list with his second six in the match in the 40th over.
Sharma had hit 194 sixes before this match as opposed to Tendulkar’s 195. Former skipper and current India wicket-keeper Mahendra Singh Dhoni, leads the list with a total of 211 sixes. Sharma is currently ranked 7th on the overall list of batsmen with most sixes in the 50-over format. Pakistan’s Shahid Afridi leads the pack with 351 sixes followed by West Indies’ Chris Gayle (275) and Sri Lanka’s Sanath Jayasuriya (270).
Ticked all the boxes: Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli was certainly a happy captain as his team registered its third biggest win in ODI history to take a much-deserved 2-1 lead in the five-match series against West Indies on Monday. The win was India’s biggest (by runs) in ODIs on home soil and the biggest against a Test playing nation in the 50-over format.
“Definitely back on track. Ticked all the boxes, clinical in all three departments. We were put under a bit of pressure in the 3rd ODI, but we bounced back,” Kohli said at the post-match presentation ceremony, India Today reported.
Elton Gomes is a staff writer at Qrius
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