It was another high-scoring encounter between India and West Indies but the hosts continued to dominate and wrapped up the series 3-0. India’s middle-order stepped up and helped them rack up 184/5 in their 20 overs. Suryakumar Yadav smashed a 31-ball 65 while Venkatesh Iyer chipped in with a valuable 35 off 19 deliveries. Barring Roston Chase and to an extent, Hayden Walsh, none of the bowlers could gain any sort of control, especially at the back end. In reply, Nicholas Pooran was going in full flow and struck his third fifty of the series. Rovman Powell threatened to replicate his second T20I exploits but threw away his start. India managed to impress with the ball at the death and kept their cool to record a 17-run win and sealed the series.
Here are the talking points of the game.
Suryakumar Yadav’s 65 takes India past 180
India once again couldn’t get a good start at the top of the order. They lost Ruturaj Gaikwad early before Ishan Kishan and Shreyas Iyer shared a 53-run stand. But they slumped to 93/4 in the 14th over. It when then Suryakumar Yadav who took charge.
The Mumbaikar had walked out to bat at No. 4 and had seen Ishan Kishan and Rohit Sharma struggle at the other end and get out. However, it seemed like he was batting on a different pitch altogether. Between the time he walked in and Rohit’s dismissal, Yadav raced 21 off 13 balls. He hit Hayden Walsh for two sixes in successive overs to get going.
Rohit’s wicket at the other end didn’t affect his tempo as Venkatesh Iyer complemented him beautifully. The latter eased the pressure with regular boundaries and consistent rotation of strike as well. Yadav got boundaries at will and explored all parts of the Eden Gardens as he displayed a wide range of shots.
The 31-year-old brought up his half-century in the final over of the innings and it came off just 27 balls. He smoked three sixes in the 20th over to finish with 65 before he was out on the last delivery. His 31-ball knock which comprised of one four and seven sixes took India past 180.
Deepak Chahar’s early strikes
In the absence of Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Deepak Chahar stepped up beautifully and gave India early breakthroughs. The 29-year-old seamer got the ball to move around and troubled the West Indian top-order. He trapped Kyle Mayers LBW on the third ball of the over but the decision was overturned on review. A couple of balls later, Chahar got one to move away from the left-hander and got him to edge it to the keeper.
In his second over, Shai Hope hit Chahar a couple of boundaries. However, the Rajasthan seamer bounced back superbly to have Hope caught-behind with an excellent outswinger. West Indies were reduced to 26/2 but Chahar pulled his hamstring and walked off with one ball remaining in his second over.
All-round Venkatesh Iyer
Venkatesh Iyer has been highly impressive throughout this series. He hasn’t batted at lot at No. 6 and all his success in the IPL has come as an opener. However, the Madhya Pradesh all-rounder has adapted really well and has made vital contributions in each of the three games. He got scores of 24 not out off 13 balls and 33 off 18 balls in the first two T20Is respectively and now, he got an unbeaten 19-ball 35.
The left-hander walked out to bat at 93/4 in the 14th over and shared an excellent 91-run stand for the fifth wicket. That came in just 37 balls and Iyer contributed with 35 runs. He struck four fours and two sixes which helped India finish with a big flourish.
With the ball, Iyer had bowled just one over in the series before this series. But Chahar’s injury meant, he had to chip in. He was hit for a six on his very first delivery but Iyer bounced back strongly. He picked up the key wickets of Kieron Pollard and Jason Holder. He ended with figures of 2/23 in 2.3 overs.
Nicholas Pooran stands tall once again for West Indies
Nicholas Pooran has been supremely consistent in this T20I series. The left-hander strode out to bat in the very first over of the run-chase after Kyle Mayers was dismissed. He started really well as he raced to 26 off 15 balls in the powerplay. He had Rovman Powell for company and the right-hander smashed 25 off 12 deliveries.
However, Powell’s dismissal soon after the powerplay slowed Pooran down. Moreover, the other batters came and kept losing their wickets which didn’t help. However, the West Indies vice-captain held the innings together nicely and kept West Indies in the hunt. He racked up his third half-century of the series and it came in 39 balls. He was hitting it well but he was dismissed for 61 in the 18th over and his wicket was the turning point. For the third time in a row, Pooran fell in the 60s and West Indies lost the plot after his wicket.
Harshal Patel impresses with a three-fer
Harshal Patel’s stocks have been on the rise in the last year or so. He had a magnificent IPL 2021 where he finished as the leading wicket-taker (Purple Cap winner) and he was handed a maiden call-up in the Indian team after the T20 World Cup. He played two games against New Zealand in November 2021 and played all three games in this series and has been amongst the wickets.
The 31-year-old pacer didn’t have a great second T20I as he conceded 46 runs in four overs. However, he bounced back superbly in this series. He got the big wicket of Rovman Powell in his very first over to break a threatening partnership. In his second over, he knocked over Roston Chase with a beautiful dipping slower yorker. Patel bowled the 19th over and sealed the game for India as he dismissed Romario Shepherd and finished with figures of 3/22 in his four overs.