1st ODI: Kuldeep, Jadeja and Ishan star in India's five-wicket win over West Indies (ld)

July 28, 2023

Bridgetown, July 28 (IANS) Spinners Kuldeep Yadav and Ravindra Jadeja combined to take seven wickets between themselves while wicketkeeper-batter Ishan Kishan made his promotion to opening count by top-scoring with 52 as India beat West Indies by five wickets in an one-sided first ODI of the three-match series at Kensington Oval, here on Thursday.

Kuldeep, brought into the attack from 17th over, took 4-6 while Jadeja set the base for the West Indies collapse with 3-37. The duo spun a vicious web of spin wizardry to bowl out West Indies for their second lowest ODI total — 114 in 23 overs — against India.

In reply, Kishan opened the batting, took on the bowlers and hit seven fours and a six in his 46-ball 52 as the visitors’ rejigged their batting order. Captain Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli sat back as everyone else were given a go with the bat.

Rohit eventually came out to bat at number seven to finish off the chase with 163 balls remaining as India got their ninth consecutive win over West Indies.

Right from winning the toss and elected to bowl first on a pitch giving assistance to bowlers, things went all right for India. Apart from Kuldeep and Jadeja, all rounders Hardik Pandya, Shardul Thakur and debutant seamer Mukesh Kumar took a scalp each as fielders took excellent catches in a fantastic all-round performance for India.

Rohit’s decision to bowl first paid off as he took the catch of Kyle Mayers at mid-on off Pandya’s back of the length delivery in the third over. Brandon King (17) and Alick Athanaze (22) batted nicely with some delightful boundaries off the pacers and put on 38 runs for the second wicket.

But the duo were separated in the eighth over when Mukesh got his first ODI wicket as Athanaze cut uppishly to backward point, followed by King chopping on to his stumps off Thakur in the next over.

Skipper Shai Hope stuck around to make 43 off 45 balls, but was running out of partners from the other end. Shimron Hetmyer’s ODI comeback ended with him missing the sweep against Jadeja and seeing his leg-stump being rattled in the 16th over.

Jadeja came back in his next over to have Rovman Powell and Romario Shepherd caught at first and second slip respectively in a span of three deliveries. Kuldeep then took over to trap Dominic Drakes, Yannick Cariah and Hope lbw with his googlies, before ending a sorry batting show of West Indies by having Jayden Seales caught at leg-slip.

Chasing 115, Kishan began with a pulled four off Dominic Drakes, while Shubman Gill was lucky in top-edge on pull flying over keeper for four. In the fourth over, Gill fell after poking at a fifth stump line ball from Jayden Seales and Brandon King took a good low catch at second slip.

Suryakumar Yadav’s promotion to number three began with a trademark glance for four and followed it up with a fine cover drive going for boundary. Kishan continued to be steady with his check-drives, pulls and flicks even as Suryakumar brought out his famed pick-up whip and sweep for boundaries.

After failing in his attempt to sweep off Motie twice, Suryakumar again went for the same shot. But this time, he was trapped lbw by the left-arm spinner who got to straighten the delivery from middle and off, and even burnt a review.

Kishan welcomed Cariah with a chip over mid-off and cut past point for a brace of fours. Though Pandya was run-out after Cariah deflected the ball to non-striker’s end, Kishan continued to make merry — dancing down the pitch to slog the leg-spinner over deep mid-wicket for six and smashed Motie over his head for four more.

After a brace off Athanaze took him to his fourth ODI fifty, Kishan fell immediately, holing out to deep mid-wicket off Motie. In the next over, Thakur fell after dabbing straight to second slip off Cariah.

Rohit, coming in at number seven, and Jadeja ensured India went over the line, with the skipper sweeping Motie to finish off the chase in style and seal an easy win for the visitors’.

For West Indies, who had a horror day with the bat as they lost seven wickets for just 26 runs, performances from spinners Yannic Cariah (1-35) and Gudakesh Motie (2-26) were the only positives on a day thoroughly dominated by India.

Brief Scores: West Indies 114 in 23 overs (Shai Hope 43, Alick Athanaze 22; Kuldeep Yadav 4-6, Ravindra Jadeja 3-37) lost to India (Ishan Kishan 52; Gudakesh Motie 2-26, Yannic Cariah 1-35) by 5 wickets.

–IANS

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