Kohli ton, Bhuvneshwar four-for help India go 1-0 up

Tuesday, 13 August 2019 00:39 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

A century from skipper Virat Kohli was followed by a disciplined bowling performance from India, led by Bhuvneshwar Kumar (4/31), as they emerged victors in the second one-day international against West Indies.

Kohli’s 42nd ODI ton ended a streak of 11 innings without one. During the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2019, the Indian captain went through a rare phase of five consecutive fifties, without converting any of them into a three-figure score. But on Sunday, 11 August, in Trinidad, he was masterful on his way to the landmark. He now trails Sachin Tendulkar by only seven in the all-time charts.

India lost Shikhar Dhawan for two and Rohit Sharma mustered 18, but as is the case with their top order, someone always seems to step up. Kohli showed tremendous control through his innings, and his most impressive partner was Shreyas Iyer, who struck a 68-ball 71.

From 101/3, the pair put up 125 in 115 balls. Kohli was a delight to watch while flicking the ball through the leg-side, and Iyer showing plenty of maturity in just his sixth ODI innings, one that featured five fours and a six. India’s skipper, though, was at another level; he hit 14 fours and cleared the rope with a straight six off Jason Holder.

Kohli fell to Carlos Brathwaite, the most impressive West Indies bowler on show, for 120. But by then, he’d already broken a number of records; Kohli is now the leading run-scorer in ODIs against West Indies, and India’s second-highest run-getter in ODIs, having surpassed Sourav Ganguly.

A brief rain delay then scuppered India’s shot at an explosive finish as they ended up with 279/7.

Chris Gayle struggled once again, perishing for 11, but not before he had surpassed Brian Lara to become West Indies’ leading run-scorer in ODIs, that too in his 300th appearance in the format.

Khaleel Ahmed bowled Shai Hope, and at 55/2, the rain came down again. Evin Lewis and Shimron Hetmyer emerged from the break with an adjusted target of 270 from 46 overs.

A few boundaries from Hetmyer’s bat reignited the chase, but a horribly-timed pull shot resulted in a top-edge that flew high before dropping into the hands of Kohli.

Lewis – hobbling through his innings with an injury – reached fifty and put on 56 with Nicholas Pooran to keep West Indies ticking over. The opener was dismissed by Kuldeep Yadav, and India’s bowlers began to apply the choke, with Bhuvneshwar giving them complete control.

Pooran fell to the seamer, after mistiming a pull; three balls later, a leading-edge from Roston Chase’ bat had Bhuvneshwar leaping to take a stunning return catch to further dampen West Indies’ chase.

The wickets continued to tumble, and while Sheldon Cottrell struck some lusty blows, India ended up victorious by 59 runs via DLS method.