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Wednesday, December 02, 2020

India draw ODI series level on back of Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul tons, Kuldeep Yadav hat-trick

India have drawn the ODI series level at 1-1 by winning the 2nd ODI in Visakhapatnam by 107 runs on Wednesday. The series decider will be played in Cuttack on Sunday.

By: Sports Desk | Updated: December 18, 2019 9:21:21 pm
Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul put on a 227-run opening stand for India in the 2nd ODI in Visakhapatnam on Wednesday. (AP Photo)

India beat West Indies in the 2nd ODI by 107 runs in Visakhapatnam on Wednesday to draw the series level. India had set West Indies a massive target of 388. West Indies were dismissed for 280 in 43.3 overs.

The series decider will be played in Cuttack on Sunday.

First Innings: India, batting first again, were given a terrific start by openers Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul, as the duo put on 227 runs in the first 37 overs, setting the rest of the team for an aggressive push in the last 10 overs. Rahul (102 off 104 balls) was the first to go, but not before reaching his first ODI ton on Indian soil. As for Rohit, his 138-ball 159 was the highest ODI score by an Indian this year, making 2019 the 7th successive year that the highest ODI score by an Indian has been made by Rohit.

Shreyas Iyer (53 off 32 balls) and Rishabh Pant (39 off 16 balls) did a marvelous job of carrying forward the momentum given to the side by the openers. With both batsmen firing on all cylinders, they even plundered 31 runs off one over, bowled by Roston Chase. Jason Holder (0/45) was the only bowler who managed to have an economy rate of less than 6.

Second Innings: West Indies got their chase off on the right note, and it looked like the 2nd ODI was likely to go down to the wire. The first wicket, of Evin Lewis (30 off 35 balls), came against the run of play. Shimron Hetmyer (4) was run out soon after. Roston Chase (4) was also bowled soon, leaving Shai Hope (78 off 85 balls) running out of partners. However, Nicholas Pooran (75 off 47 balls) entered the scene at this stage and set it alight.

Mohammed Shami had an impact in the 30th over, with the chase again looking achievable, as he knocked over Pooran and Kieron Pollard off consecutive balls to give India the upper hand again. In the 33rd over, with West Indies losing their way in the chase, Kuldeep Yadav picked up a hat-trick, becoming the only Indian with two hat-tricks in international cricket. From then on, the result was a foregone conclusion.

Gamechanger: Nicholas Pooran’s counter-attacking knock looked to have the potential to change the game around, like Shimron Hetmyer had done in the first match, but the matter was put to rest by Shami in the 30th over. When Pollard departed for a golden duck off the next ball, the match had been all but won. In the space of two balls, India had gone from looking to be in a tentative situation to rank favourites.

Brief Scores: IND 387/5 (50 overs) WI 280 all out (43.3 overs)

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