Axar Patel scored a sparkling unbeaten 64, as India beat West Indies in a thrilling second one day international at Queen’s Park Oval in Port of Spain, Trinidad, on Sunday.
After winning the toss and electing to bat first, openers Shai Hope and Kyle Mayers got West Indies off to a flying start. The duo added 65 runs for the opening wicket before Mayers chipped a return catch to Deepak Hooda for 39.
Hope featured in yet another 62 run stand for the second wicket alongside Shamarh Brooks before the latter (35) perished to a smart catch by Shikhar Dhawan at slips off Axar.
Brandon King (0) then top edged a slog sweep off Yuzvendra Chahal to Dhawan, leaving the hosts at 130/3.
The 28 year old Hope along with skipper Nicholas Pooran put the West Indies in top with a superb fourth wicket stand of 117 runs. The Windies skipper slammed Chahal for two sixes and reached a well deserved half century in the 39th over.
However Shardul Thakur broke the stand by cleaning up the left hander around his legs for a superb 77 ball-74. Hope reached his century in his 100th ODI in a brilliant fashion by launching Chahal over his head for a maximum.
Rovman Powell joined in and clobbered Thakur over the long-on ropes. However the all rounder hit back as Powell (13) drilled the pacer straight to Shreyas Iyer at long-off.
Hope’s fine innings of 115 ended, when he was caught at long-off by Axar Patel off Shardul. Romario Shepherd (14)* struck a couple of lusty blows in the end to take the hosts to 311/6 in their allotted 50 overs.
Chasing 312, Indian openers Shikhar Dhawan and Shubman Gill started cautiously. The pair added 48 runs for the first wicket before the former (13) fell to a stupendous catch at deep third man by Mayers off Shepherd.
Gill looked set for his second consecutive half century, but perished while attempting a scoop off Mayers and offered a simple return catch to the bowler for 43.
The visitors were in further trouble when Suryakumar Yadav (9) dragged at a short delivery from Mayers on to his stumps leaving them in a spot of bother at 79/3.
Shreyas Iyer and Sanju Samson brought the innings back on track with a 99 run stand for the fourth wicket before Alzarri Joseph broke the stand by trapping Iyer (63) right in front with a yorker.
Sanju Samson reached his maiden ODI fifty by clipping a full toss from Jayden Seales for four. He however was run out for a well made 54.
Deepak Hooda and Axar Patel added 51 runs for the fifth wicket before the former was caught at backward point by Hayden Walsh off Akeal Hosein for 33.
With 32 needed off 24 balls, Axar reached his maiden fifty by smashing two successive fours off Romario Shepherd.
At the other end, debutant Avesh Khan scored a valuable 10 which included two fours. However he was dismissed in the penultimate over, while attempting for a wild swing at deep square leg.
However, with six needed off three balls, Patel finished the match in style by lofting a full toss from Kyle Mayers for a maximum, as the visitors overhauled the target with two balls to spare.
Axar Patel was declared the Man of the Match for his swashbuckling knock.
West Indies 311 for 6 (Hope 115, Pooran 74, Thakur 3-54) lost to India 312 for 8 (Axar 64*, Iyer 63, Samson 54, Joseph 2-46, Mayers 2-48) by two wickets
The third and final ODI will be played at Queen’s Park Oval in Trinidad on Wednesday, July 27.