Evin Lewis powers Windies to a dominating win over India

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Evin Lewis powers Windies to a dominating win over India

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SportsCafe Desk


Evin Lewis (125*) single-handedly decimated the Indian bowling attack to guide the hosts to a convincing 9-wicket victory over India in the one-off T20 in Jamaica. Earlier, the Indian innings was pulled back by some excellent death bowling by the Windies spearheaded by Jerome Taylor (2/31).

Brief Scores: India 190/6 (Dinesh Karthik 48, Virat Kohli 39; Jerome Taylor 2/31, Kersick Williams 3/42) lost to Windies 194/1 (Evin Lewis 125*, Marlon Samuels 36*; Kuldeep Yadav 1/34) by 9 wickets. 

West Indies won the toss and Carlos Brathwaite decided to chase against a batting heavy Indian side on the batting friendly Sabina Park pitch. The Windies side came into the match with a completely transformed side comprising T20 stars like Chris Gayle, Sunil Narine, and Samuel Badree. India, on the other hand, missed the in-form Hardik Pandya, due to a knock he picked up during the warm up, and started with three spinners with Kuldeep Yadav making his T20I debut while Rishabh Pant finally had a part to play on the tour.

Kohli-Dhawan befuddle the Windies bowlers

West Indies started the proceedings with Samuel Badree, who is known for his exceptional economy rate (5.61) in T20Is, but the move backfired as Virat Kohli worked the very first delivery of the match towards the boundary. Shikhar Dhawan followed suit hitting the leggie for two boundaries as India scored 13 runs in the first over - their best start against the Windies. The duo kept dealing in boundaries with the hosts struggling to find any answer to the exceptional strokeplay that was on display by both the batsmen as India reached the 50-run milestone in the 5th over. However, Kersick Williams turned the tables on the Men in Blue dismissing both the openers in the same over as India finished the first powerplay with 66 runs on the board.  The Windies tried to further tighten the knot on the Indian innings but Dinesh Karthik ensured the scoring rate didn’t fall below 9 rpo while Rishabh Pant took his time to settle into a rhythm as India reached the halfway mark of the innings with the scoreboard reading 93/2.

Gritty Windies bowlers stage a comeback to restrict India to 190 

Karthik continued playing the role of the aggressor while Pant ensured that he keeps rotating the strike as the duo reached the 50-run partnership mark in just 38 deliveries. Windies skipper Carlos Brathwaite faced the brunt of Karthik’s improvisation when the right-hander smashed him for two sixes in the 13th over with India reaching 140-5 at the end of 15 overs and a big score looked certain. Pant finally took off in the 16th over scoring 11 runs off the first three deliveries but the over also brought an end to Karthik’s (48) brilliant innings as he was bowled by Samuels. The incoming MS Dhoni did not last long and perished for 2 at the hands of Jerome Taylor as India seemed to struggle to finish the innings on a high. The set Pant squandered away his wicket on the very next delivery trying to play a fancy uppercut as the Windies slowly started to take command of the match. Kedar Jadhav soon followed the duo back to the dressing room and boundaries were proving to be an elusive commodity. Ravichandran Ashwin (11*) and Ravindra Jadeja (13*), however, ensured that India managed to finish with a par score of 190 runs on the board. 

Evin Lewis tears apart the Indian bowling attack

Bhuvneshwar Kumar bowled a perfect first over for India giving away just 5 runs and Indian skipper Virat Kohli was quick to hand Ravichandran Ashwin the ball as early as the second over and the move seemed to work until a vintage Chris Gayle smashed the off-spinner for a six. However, the equation soon changed when Mohammed Shami was clobbered for 19 runs in his very first over as Windies caught up with the required run rate. The trend continued as Evin Lewis pounded the bowlers for 30 runs in two overs. However, the 25-year-old was handed a lifeline when a mistimed shot landed safe as Kohli and Mohammed Shami ran into each other. Lewis got to his second T20 fifty in a mere 24 deliveries before he was dropped once again, this time by Dinesh Karthik, which denied Kuldeep Yadav his very first wicket in the shortest format. However, Kuldeep did not have to wait long as Gayle top-edged a delivery into the hands of MS Dhoni. Lewis, on the other hand, kept firing on all cylinders as the home team finished the first half of their innings with a score of 95/1. 

Lewis’ ton seals the game for the home team

India managed to pull the Windies innings back by some margin with some tight overs from Kuldeep Yadav and Ravindra Jadeja. However, Marlon Samuels showcased his power hitting abilities at the other end and Shami, once again, ended up on the receiving end being smashed for another 16 runs in his third over. Lewis continued his all guns blazing knock and brought up the second T20 hundred of his career, as well as his second ton against India, in just 53 deliveries as the West Indies looked to be cruising towards an easy win. Samuels joined in his partner in the run-scoring frenzy and started dealing in boundaries while Lewis continued to deal in maximums which left the Windies needing just 8 runs off the last 2 overs. Lewis, deservingly, scored the winning runs finishing the game with a colossal six as the Windies went past their target with nine balls to spare. 

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