India’s first international game since their World Cup semi-final exit at the hands of New Zealand saw them beat reigning T20 World champions West Indies in Florida. Here are our talking points from the game.
West Indies (95/9) lost to India (98/6 in 17.2 overs)
Navdeep Saini impresses on international debut
RCB pacer Navdeep Saini was given his maiden international cap today and produced a fine performance with the ball to justify his inclusion. Saini was carted for six by Nicholas Pooran on his second delivery, but recovered to dismiss the southpaw and Shimron Hetmyer in the same over.
He also returned to take the wicket of the well-set Kieron Pollard in the last over of the game (also a maiden), and finished with impressive figures of 3/17. Rightly named the Man of the Match.
Disappointing batting performance from the West Indies
This was a wretched batting performance from the West Indies. They finished with less than a hundred in their allotted 20 overs, and only two batsmen- Pooran and Kieron Pollard, crossed double digits. Not what you’d expect from a team who are the reigning champions in this format of the game.
All of India’s bowlers pick up wickets
Visiting skipper Virat Kohli chose to bowl after winning the toss and his bowlers justified his decision by restricting the Windies to 95/9. Lanky spinner Washington Sundar started proceedings on the perfect note by getting John Campbell to hole out for a duck on the second ball of the game. The CSK offie also hit a six to finish off things in India’s chase.
Kohli employed six bowlers, and every single one of them picked up wickets. A fine confidence booster for them ahead of the remaining two T20’s.
India’s batsmen make heavy weather of their chase
India seemed to be a hurry to finish this off, and that was reflected in their batsmen’s approach to the chase. The worst dismissal among them was that of Rishabh Pant, who attempted to sweep the wily Sunil Narine in his very first delivery, only to got caught on the boundary for a golden duck.
If the Windies had managed 120 plus, this could’ve been a very interesting chase. However thanks to the depth of their batting lineup, the visitors did just enough, and won in the 18th over with four wickets to spare.
West Indies need someone to complement Narine and Cottrell
T20 is all about having wicket takers in your ranks and the West Indies have two fine bowlers in Sheldon Cottrell and Sunil Narine. Between them, the duo went for just 34 runs in their eight overs and picked up four wickets. Unfortunately the rest of the bowling simply don’t carry the same threat level, and India’s batsmen were able to pick them off at ease.
Much was expected of Oshane Thomas, but the young speedster hasn’t quite been able to live up to expectations- both in the World Cup and in this fixture. Keemo Paul is decent, but the Windies need more quality in their bowling ranks if they are to defend their world title.