West Indies vs India 2nd T20I: Hosts level series with five-wicket win

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West Indies’ five-wicket victory against India at Warner Park meant the five-match T20I series is now level at 1-1.

A late blitz from Devon Thomas (19-ball 31) coupled with opener Brandon King’s knock of 68 helped the hosts fight off late pressure and comfortably chase a target of 139 in 19.2 overs. The victory would not have been possible without pacer Obed McCoy’s impressive spell of 6/17 in the first part of the game.

West Indies captain Nicholas Pooran won the toss and opted to bowl first. Both teams opted to ring in changes to their playing XI, with Avesh Khan replacing Ravi Bishnoi for India.

Hosts West Indies, meanwhile, brought in Brandon King and Devon Thomas for Keemo Paul and Shamarh Brooks.

India got off to a rocky start as Windies’ Obed McCoy and Alzarri Joseph reduced the visitors to 56/3 in the mandatory powerplay. Skipper Rohit Sharma, out for a golden duck, became just the third Indian to be dismissed on the very first ball of a T20I innings.

Between overs 6.3 and 13.4, the Men in Blue banked on the run-a-ball 43-run stand between Ravindra Jadeja and Hardik Pandya for the fifth wicket to cross 100 runs. India crossed triple figures in 12.5 overs.

However, following Jadeja’s dismissal in the 17th over, wickets kept tumbling for India as they were eventually bowled out for 138 in 19.4 overs.

Obed McCoy was the pick of the bowlers as he registered his career-best figures of 6/17 in T20I cricket. Furthermore, the left-arm speedster is the first bowler to pick up a five-wicket haul against India in T20Is.

Windies, chasing 139, got off to a comfortable start with 46/0 in the initial six overs.

But, in the next four overs, the hosts would score 27 runs and lose two wickets. While Hardik Pandya grabbed the wicket of Kyle Mayers (8), spinner Ravichandran Ashwin dismissed West Indies captain Nicholas Pooran for 14.

Reaching his half-century at the end of the 12th over, Windies opener Brandon King departed for 68 as his team would require 32 runs from the next 27 balls to win the contest.

Playing in his sixth T20I, Devon Thomas maintained his composure with a 19-ball 31, as he see off the likes of Arshdeep Singh, Avesh Khan and Hardik Pandya and guide the hosts to victory.

West Indies completed their innings at 141/5 in 19.4 overs, as they chased 10 runs off the final six deliveries.

The fixture proved to be a tight victory for West Indies, as they required 27 runs off 18 balls entering the final three overs.

But, as the Indian bowlers conceded a combined 17 runs in the 18th and 19th overs, it was just a battle of nerves for the likes of Devon Thomas (31*) and Odean Smith (4*) to take West Indies past the finish line.

The teams will reconvene for the third T20I on Tuesday, August 2.