Kohli leads India past Windies as Gayle breaks Lara's records

By Sports Desk August 11, 2019

Chris Gayle broke two of Brian Lara's ODI records but a sublime century from Virat Kohli inspired India to a 59-run victory in Port of Spain and a 1-0 series lead over West Indies with one match to play.

Gayle surpassed Lara to become the first West Indian to make 300 appearances in the 50-over format and also moved past the great left-hander's record tally of 10,348 ODI runs at the Queen's Park Oval on Sunday.

The opener fell for only 11 soon after making history and Bhuvneshwar Kumar took 4-31 as Jason Holder's side were bowled out for 210, chasing a revised target of 270 to win from 46 overs after a couple of rain delays – Evin Lewis top scoring with 65.

Kohli (120) was the star of the show, the India captain crafting a 42nd ODI hundred and setting a record of his own for the fewest innings to score 2,000 ODI runs against one nation in his 34th knock against the Windies.

The classy Kohli also moved past Sourav Ganguly into second on the all-time list of India's leading ODI run-makers and held three catches, while Shreyas Iyer scored an excellent 71 in India's 279-7.

Sheldon Cottrell gave the Windies an ideal start by trapping Shikhar Dhawan leg before from the third ball of the match, but Kohli – who won the toss – and Rohit Sharma set a platform with a second-wicket stand of 74.

Kohli was in ominous touch from the start of his latest masterclass, scoring freely on both sides of the wicket, and Iyer provided great support for his skipper after Rohit and Rishabh Pant departed.

India were 101-3 in the 23rd over when Carlos Brathwaite (3-53) bowled Pant, but Kohli and the impressive Iyer frustrated the Windies with a fourth-wicket stand of 125.

Kohli crunched Holder back over his head for six and pointed to his name on his shirt to celebrate yet another hundred before holing out off Brathwaite and Iyer followed after hitting a six and five fours.

Gayle was given a standing ovation and a shake of the hand by Kohli when he surpassed Lara's tally, but Bhuvneshwar sent him on his way soon after leg before.

Shai Hope and Shimron Hetmyer also failed following a second rain delay, but Lewis dug in for a fluent half-century despite suffering a calf injury before Kohli rose to remove the opener with a sharp one-handed catch at extra cover off Kuldeep Yadav.

Nicholas Pooran played his shots to give the Windies hope, but Bhuvneshwar dismissed him for 42 and took a brilliant catch off his own bowling to get rid of Roston Chase as India secured a comfortable win.

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    Rohit was unbeaten on 117 and Ajinkya Rahane 83 not out when stumps were drawn due to bad light, with India on 224-3 as they bid to secure a 3-0 whitewash after being reduced to 39-3 in Ranchi on Saturday.

    The selectors promoted Rohit to open for the first time in the longest format in the series against the Proteas and the 32-year-old has grasped his opportunity, making three hundreds.

    Rathour has been impressed with the application Rohit has shown following his promotion and always felt there should be a place for the dangerous right-hander in all three formats.

    "He is such an experienced player I don't think you needed to do anything with his technique, the only adjustment I think he had to make was his game plans," said Rathour

    "In Test cricket you need to play through those tough spells and I think he's doing that really well in this series.

    "If he can keep doing that, once he's set, then he is a phenomenal player - we all know that - he can really punish you. He needed to make that mental adjustment to his game plans and he's done that well. 

    "I always said he's too good a player not to be playing in any format, so I think it was a good call to get him to open and with the amount of runs scored of course, I think he has settled the issue for the time being.

    "Somebody with his experience and the kind of cricket he plays, if he starts coming good for you at the top of the order that changes everything for the Indian dynamic - even when you are touring."

     

  • Rohit and Rahane put India on top after poor start in Ranchi Rohit and Rahane put India on top after poor start in Ranchi

    Rohit Sharma made his third century of the series and Ajinkya Rahane was also closing in on a hundred as India hit back after a poor start on day one of the third Test against South Africa in Ranchi.

    Kagiso Rabada took two early wickets in a magnificent new-ball spell and India - who gave a debut to Shahbaz Nadeem - were 39-3 when Anrich Nortje removed Virat Kohli for 12.

    That was as good as it got for a Proteas side that included five changes - with Heinrich Klaasen and George Linde handed Test bows - as an unbroken fourth-wicket stand of 185 between Rohit (117 not out) and Rahane (83no) put India in control.

    Rohit punished the Proteas attack with a combination of exquisite timing and power in his new role at the top of the order and Rahane played with great fluency in a classy knock.

    India were 224-3 when bad light brought play to a premature end as they bid to secure a 3-0 whitewash.

    Rabada (2-54) roared in to raise South Africa's spirits after their hammering in Pune last week, the in-form Mayank Agarwal (10) edging the paceman to Dean Elgar at third slip off the final ball of the fifth over.

    Cheteshwar Pujara soon followed without scoring when he was struck on the back pad and given leg before wicket, with Rabada then denied a third wicket as Rohit overturned an lbw decision.

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    “And so, all these questions need to be asked but I think that certainly, he has thrown his hands in the ring for the next T20 World Cup. I personally believe that he has done well enough to be considered and to be part of that particular unit,” Sir Viv had said before Walsh Jr’s selection to te West Indies’ white ball squads.

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    “And especially with this last performance in terms of being on the winning team with the most wickets, this is how I think Samuel Badree came into contention for the West Indies … I think he came in and he had some success … I don’t think he was as successful as what Hayden Walsh would have [been].”

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    To be fair as well, too, he brings so much as well, especially as a spinner; his athleticism in the field. Everything is so brilliant about him, you need some sort of an individual like that for those sort of tournaments,” he said.

    Few would have heard of the 27-year-old Antiguan-American before the start of this season but it's safe to say his whirlwind leg break bowling took the competition by storm.  His 22 wickets in 9 matches representing a tournament-high that earned him the Hero Player of the Tournament award.

    Twice this season the spinner proved completely unplayable for the opposition, claiming five wickets against the Trinbago Knight Riders and four against the St Lucia Zouks to help catapult the then-struggling team into the playoffs. 

    Eventually, it set the stage for one of the biggest upsets in the competition's history with a win over the previously unbeaten Guyana Amazon Warriors in the final.  

    Perhaps even fewer would remember the bowler’s forgettable CPL debut season for St Kitts and Nevis Patriots in 2018 where his two overs in just two matches went for a costly 54, with no wickets to show. 

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