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That is it then from this game and for the first time since 2016, West Indies have beaten India in back-to-back T20I matches. Right then, two down, three more to go and the third T20I will be played at the same ground, the Providence Stadium in Guyana on Tuesday, the 8th of August. The action will begin at 8 pm IST (2.30 pm GMT) but you can join us for the build-up a lot earlier. Cheers!
Rovman Powell, the skipper of West Indies informs that they are really in a good position. Says that it was always going to come down to how they bat against the spinners. Feels that they did great in the middle overs but lost their way by the end. States that left-handers have an advantage against wrist spinners and he is glad they have two great players in that role – Nicholas Pooran and Shimron Hetmyer and it’s just that at least one of them has to play enough deliveries. Ends by praising Romario Shepherd for his bowling effort as well.
Hardik Pandya, the captain of India says that in all honesty, the batting performance from them was under par and even though the wicket was on the slower side, they should have gotten to 160-170. On Nicholas Pooran, he says that it becomes difficult to rotate the spinners when he is hitting the ball like this but they did fight back well. Adds that the current combination that they have, they have to bat with 7 batters and need to trust the team and they need to figure out a way to get more contribution from the tailenders if required but the batters themselves need to take more responsibility. On Tilak Varma, he says that the way he has been batting gives them a solid option in the middle order, especially given that he is a left-hander.
Nicholas Pooran wins the Player of the Match award. He starts by saying that he is satisfied with his performance. Mentions that the beauty of this game is that it isn’t over until it is over. States that he does not feel that he is in his purple patch, since losing the captaincy he has started to look at the game from a different perspective and adds that all the hard work is paying off. Says that it is all about being positive and having the right energy.
The Presentation ceremony…
Earlier in the game, Hardik Pandya won the toss and opted to bat first on a pitch that did look a bit spin friendly. The Indian openers went hard at the bowling but Shubman Gill fell early followed by Suryakumar Yadav. Ishan Kishan and Tilak Varma led the fightback before Kishan too got out and after that, there was simply no one to stick around with Varma. Varma did bring up his maiden T20I fifty and a couple of lusty blows from the tailenders took India to over 150. As for the Windies’ bowlers, they were pretty good for most of the innings with Akeal Hosein and Alzarri Joseph picking up a couple of wickets while remaining economical. Coming to the chase, it swung from one end to the other but eventually, the hosts managed to get over the line.
India will have a lot of mixed emotions at the moment but it is another defeat for them and yet another sub-par display. Skipper Hardik Pandya took the new ball and gave his side a dream start with a double breakthrough in the very first over. But, the visitors did bowl a couple of really expensive overs and got the opposition to get well ahead of the required rate. They seemed to have no answer for Nicholas Pooran and due to this, Axar Patel wasn’t even used. They did however get back into the game with a plethora of wickets thanks mainly to the leg-spin duo of Yuzvendra Chahal and Ravi Bishnoi but the pacers simply didn’t back it up at the backend of the chase. India now face an uphill task of winning three games in a row to clinch the series.
After another solid display with the ball, West Indies got off to a poor start with the bat with Brandon King and Johnson Charles both falling in the first over. There was a counterpunch from Kyle Mayers but he too got out leaving the hosts 32/3. Then came the 57-run stand between skipper Rovman Powell and Nicholas Pooran with the latter in sensational hitting form. This partnership turned the game on its head and at one point they were 126/4 with Pooran spitting fire. This however soon became 129/8 and at that point, the hosts looked down and out. Luckily for them, the pair of Akeal Hosein and Alzarri Joseph came clutch and managed to take the side home with 7 balls to spare.
Pheww, that was a humdinger! West Indies have gone from cruising to victory to throwing it all away to just about scraping over the line and they will be mightily relieved. The hosts go 2-0 up in the five-match T20I series, just one game away from sealing the series.
18.5 overs (4 Runs) FOUR! Here are the winning runs. Akeal Hosein takes his side over the line here. An all-round performance from the spinner. Mukesh Kumar pitches it up, on off. Akeal Hosein drills it down the park for a cracking boundary. West Indies win the match by 2 wickets.
18.4 overs (2 Runs) A length ball, on off. Akeal Hosein lofts it over mid on. They take two runs.
18.3 overs (1 Run) A yorker-length delivery, on off. Joseph jams it out to long on for a single.
18.2 overs (6 Runs) SIX! GONE! India in a spot of bother. Back of a length, outside off. Alzarri Joseph stands tall and dispatches it towards deep mid-wicket. The ball has enough in it to lands on the advertising cushions of the boundary ropes.
18.1 overs (1 Run) A length ball, wide of off. Akeal Hosein stays back and punches it to deep point for a single. India need a wicket and that too in this over.
17.6 overs (1 Run) A single now to end the over! 12 needed off 12 now. A slower bumper, outside off. Akeal Hosein knocks it to deep point for one.
17.5 overs (1 Run) Alzarri Joseph now flicks this full ball in front of long on and takes a single.
17.4 overs (2 Runs) A length ball, on fourth stump. Alzarri Joseph lofts it over mid off. The batters take two runs. This is really good running.
17.3 overs (0 Run) Fuller, angled into the pads. Alzarri Joseph clips it into mid-wicket.
17.2 overs (1 Run) Back of a length, on off, moving away. It goes down to third man off the outside edge. One taken.
17.1 overs (4 Runs) FOUR! A much-needed boundary for the hosts. Akeal Hosein is capable enough of putting the ball out of the park, and this boundary can act as a confidence booster for the spinner. An outswinger, full and wide outside off. Akeal Hosein reaches out. uses the pace of the ball and squeezes it out to deep point for four runs.
16.6 overs (0 Run) Two dots in a row to end the over! Back of a length, outside off, swinging away. Alzarri Joseph tries to chase it but gets beaten in the process.
16.5 overs (0 Run) A dot now! An inswinger, full and on off. Alzarri Joseph pushes it into covers.
16.4 overs (1 Run) A length ball, angled across, outside off. Hosein gets an inside edge on it and works it down to fine leg for one.
16.3 overs (0 Run) A dot now! A loud appeal for lbw but turned down. Hardik Pandya goes for the review once again. It is a full-length delivery, on leg. Mukesh Kumar tries to flick it away but misses and gets pinged on his pads. UltraEdge shows no bat is involved. The Ball Tracking shows that the ball is pitching outside leg. The on-field decision stands and with that, India lose all their review.
16.2 overs (1 Run) LEG BYE! West Indies require a run a ball at this stage, so singles are still hurting the Indians here. Fuller, sliding down the leg side. Alzarri Joseph tries to flick it away but misses. It clips his pads and goes past the keeper. Chahal does well to stop it at short fine. They cross for a leg bye, there was a slight confusion amongst the batters as well but no damage done.
16.1 overs (1 Run) It is full and on off. Akeal Hosein drives it down to long off for a single.
Alzarri Joseph walks out to bat now.
15.6 overs (0 Run) A loud appeal for lbw but turned down! Chahal is convinced and Hardik Pandya takes the review. It is tossed up, around off, the ball turns into the batter. Shimron Hetmyer tries to flick it away but misses and gets pinged on his pads. The umpire thinks it is going above the sticks and keeps his finger down. Thanks to the technology, India are able to get rid of Shimron Hetmyer now as the Ball Tracking shows three reds. And the suddenly, the floodgates have opened up here. Three wickets come in total in this over. India have the momentum on their side.
15.5 overs (1 Run) On the pads, clipped to deep square leg for one.
Akeal Hosein is the next batter in.
15.4 overs (0 Run) OUT! STUMPED! Yuzvendra Chahal now picks up his first wicket of the match and it could’ve have come at any better time than this. A leg spinner, around off. Jason Holder leans forward and tries to defend it out but misses. The ball zips past the outside edge. Ishan Kishan gathers the ball quickly and takes the bails off in a jiffy. The umpire takes it upstairs to confirm and the third umpire informs that Jason Holder has no part of his leg behind the popping crease.
15.3 overs (0 Run) On the pads, Holder clips it into the leg side.
15.2 overs (0 Run) It is drifted in, on off. The ball grips and turns away. Jason Holder is beaten here.
15.1 overs (1 Run) OUT! RUN OUT! Another one bites the dust. There is still some hope for India. It is looped up, on the pads. Shimron Hetmyer flicks it to deep mid-wicket. The batters push hard for the first one, they are surely looking for the second run here. Romario Shepherd is quick to turn and is committed on the bases of the call, but Shimron Hetmyer denies him then which leaves him hanging in the middle of the pitch. Axar Patel throws is to the keeper, who makes no mistake. Jason Holder is the new man in.
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