• Subscribe RSS
  • Dhoni’s heroics takes India through

    Mahendra Singh Dhoni played a captain’s knock as India battled inclement weather to defeat the West Indies by six wickets via the Duckworth-Lewis method and take an unassailable 2-1 lead in the four-match ODI series at the Beausejour Stadium, here on Saturday.

    Needing 11 runs off the last over, after the target was revised to 159 from 22 overs, Dhoni (46 not out) sent Jerome Taylor’s second delivery for a six over mid-wicket as India won with a ball to spare.

    The one-dayer was almost reduced to a Twenty20 fixture as it witnessed as many as four stoppages due to rain during the West Indies innings — including a two-hour-and-five-minute delay at the start of the match. The interruptions forced the overs to be brought down to 27 per side.

    Put in to bat, the host rode on Ramnaresh Sarwan’s 62 to post a competitive 186 for seven and India was set a revised target of 195 following the D/L method.

    Good start

    The visitors needed a strong start and Dinesh Karthik (47 off 43 balls) and Gautam Gambhir (44 off 38) did just that. The duo put on 84 runs before a direct throw from Ravi Rampaul ended Karthik’s innings.

    Gambhir and Dhoni took the score to 95 for one off 13.3 overs when rain intervened for the fifth time and following a 22-minute delay, the target was revised to 159 in 22 overs.

    Needing another 64 runs from 51 deliveries, India lost Gambhir and Yuvraj Singh (2) in quick succession.

    With 11 runs required off the last seven deliveries, Rohit Sharma too departed leaving Dhoni to see the team through. The skipper’s 34-ball unbeaten knock included a couple of boundaries besides the six in the last over.

    While Dhoni sparkled, the opening partnership too did the job.

    Karthik and Gambhir not only complemented each other but also gave the visitors a perfect launchpad to go for victory after Sarwan’s 58-ball 62 (5x4, 1x6) had guided the West Indies to 185 for seven.

    Sarwan was involved in two crucial partnerships, 51 runs with Runako Morton (22) and another 48 with Shivnarine Chanderpaul (15) before he was run out going for a non-existent second. Gambhir’s strong throw found Sarwan short of the mark.

    Gayle force hits seamers

    He carried on the momentum provided by captain Chris Gayle (27), who gave the host a rollicking start after the match started two hours and five minutes late following a rain delay that first reduced the match to 41 overs a side. Gayle hit Ishant Sharma for a couple of boundaries in each of his first two overs. Left-arm pacer Ashish Nehra received similar treatment in his second over, another couple of boundaries, before rain intervened with the West Indies at 27 for no loss from 3.3 overs.

    Play resumed after a 15-minute delay but the distraction was enough to unsettle the West Indies captain, who departed chasing a widish delivery from Nehra. Gayle slashed the first ball after resumption and Dhoni did the rest behind the stumps. His 14-ball stay at the crease had six hits to the fence.

    Morton (22 off 34 balls), who was a silent spectator till then was joined by Sarwan and the duo took the score to 56 for one from 9.1 overs before rain intervened for a third time. Following another 15-minute delay, the overs were reduced to 36 per side.

    However, rain forced play to be suspended again just two deliveries after re-start with the host on 57 for one.

    This time play remained suspended for an hour and 20 minutes before it resumed with the overs reduced to 27 a side. Morton greeted R.P. Singh with a four but fell soon after.

    Sarwan, though, didn’t let the stoppages affect his rhythm as he took 16 runs off one Yuvraj over to help the host go past the 100-run mark in 16 overs.

    Along with the vastly experienced Chanderpaul, Sarwan put on 48 runs before the left-hander departed trying to hoist Yusuf Pathan over mid-on and Nehra doing the rest.

    There were two changes for India with Ishant Sharma and Abhishek Nayar replacing Praveen Kumar and Ravindra Jadeja, but West Indies was unchanged.

    Friday’s victory means that India is in pole position to formalise a rare ODI series victory in the Caribbean before taking a break. — Agencies


     West Indies: C. Gayle c Dhoni b Nehra 27 (14b, 6x4), R. Morton st. Dhoni b Harbhajan 22 (34b, 2x4), R. Sarwan (run out) 62 (59b, 5x4, 1x6), S. Chanderpaul c Nehra b Yusuf 15 (14b, 2x4), Dwayne Bravo c Dhoni b Nehra 14 (19b, 1x4), Darren Bravo b Nehra 21 (15b, 3x4), D. Ramdin (not out) 14 (6b, 1x4, 1x6), J. Taylor c Sharma b Harbhajan 1 (2b), Extras (lb-7, w-2, nb-1) 10, Total (for seven wkts. in 27 overs): 186.

    Fall of wickets: 1-27, 2-78, 3-125, 4-135, 5-170, 6-173, 7-186.

    India bowling: Ishant 5-0-35-0, Nehra 5-1-21-3, R.P. Singh 5-0-34-0, Harbhajan 5-0-35-2, Yuvraj 2-0-19-0, Rohit 1-0-7-0, Yusuf 4-0-28-1.

    India (target: 159 from 22 overs): D. Karthik (run out) 47 (43b, 5x4, 1x6), G. Gambhir c Ramdin b Benn 44 (38b, 2x4), M.S. Dhoni (not out) 46(34b, 2x4, 1x6), Yuvraj c Darren Bravo b Bernard 2 (6b), Rohit c Bernard b Dwayne Bravo 11 (9b), Yusuf (not out) 1 (2b), Extras (lb-4, w-3, nb-1) 8, Total (for four wkts. in 21.5 overs): 159.

    Fall of wickets: 1-84, 2-108, 3-117, 4-148.

    West Indies bowling: Taylor 3.5-0-39-0, Rampaul 4-0-26-0, Dwayne Bravo 4-0-27-1, Bernard 3-0-21-1, Benn 5-0-31-1, Gayle 2-0-11-0.

    India won under D/L method

    Posted in |