August 13, 2022
Recent Match Report – West Indies vs India 3rd T20I 2022

India 165 for 3 wickets (Suryakumar 76, Pant 33 *, Hossain 1-28) defeated West Indies 164 for 5 (Meyers 73, Powell 23, Bhuvneshwar 2-35) by 7 wickets

Suryakumar Yadav held a workshop on how to hit the hard length after Hardik Pandya and R Ashwin helped West Indies retain 164 in their 20 overs. Suryakumar’s 44-ball 76 helped India chase down the target and take a 2-1 lead in the five-match series with one over remaining.

The only concern for India was the fitness of their captain Rohit Sharma, who retired hurt due to a suspected back cramp while batting.

On a bouncy track that hosted their second match in two days, West Indies got off to a quick start in the powerplay but Pandya and Ashwin pulled them back with their change of pace. Between these two, he gave only 45 runs in eight overs.

While Kyle Meyers scored 73 off 50 balls, 20 runs from Brandon King and Nicholas Pooran hurt West Indies’ pace. Shimron Hetmyer and Rovman Powell helped him score 80 runs in the last seven but it was not enough to trouble Suryakumar.

After facing the first ball, Suryakumar looked in tremendous touch, pulling a yorker through covers for four. He followed up perfectly acceptable balls thrown at difficult lengths with barely reliable shots.

Five of his 12 fours were behind the square on the off side, a belly behind the square on the leg side, but his best shot was an aerial inside-out drive to a short-of-a-length ball over middle stump, which included a It was a six. At wide long-off. It was one of an exhibition put up by Suryakumar, who threatened to score a century in a short chase at a time.

By the time that was done, India needed just 30 runs off 33 balls.

Meyers signal intent
India took a quiet over from Deepak Hooda with the new ball, but Meyers got caught up in any momentum on offer, especially from Avesh Khan. If he went to the leg side against Avesh, he made room for Bhuvneshwar Kumar to open cover while bowling. Arshdeep Singh did well in the final powerplay over, but Meyers and King penalized two small mistakes from Ashwin’s length in the seventh over at 56 for 0.

Pandya, Ashwin choke in the middle overs
Pandya, who was pulled off for a six in his first over, got a change of ends, which meant Meyers was hitting a strong wind if he pulled. The next three overs brought in extra bounce, difficult length and pace changes, which went for just 11 runs, and also brought the wicket of King, who played slamming at him.

Ashwin had two left-handed batsmen, and he turned them around a bit with his moves and variations on the pitch. Meyers and Pooran were able to hit a four and a six in their remaining three overs, but they had to take a big risk. By the time the two were paired, West Indies had reached just 84 in 13 overs.

Even in the last exchange
West Indies were able to successfully target Avesh in the final exchanges, but Arshdeep and Bhuvneshwar pulled them back, denying them the finishing kick they badly needed after that mid-over slump. Meyers and Rovman Powell played some incredible shots to score 80 runs in these seven overs, but they were comparable.

suryakumar show
First ball Suryakumar – opening for the third time in this series – faced a short full toss, which didn’t take much room, but he did it through cover for a boundary. He was just warming up those nimble wrists. In the fourth over, he played a mix of ramp and drive and sent Ajlari Joseph for a six in the third over.

India took 56 from the powerplay when West Indies would have expected a similar slump.

Suryakumar, however, dismissed Jason Holder in the eighth over, and then punished Joseph for no fault of his in the tenth over. A short-off-length delivery for six over wide long-off was followed by a ramp up around the leg stump, with Suryakumar almost arching his back to make room for it. It was the half mark, and India needed just 69.

Before being signed out, Suryakumar played another outrageous shot, sweeping left-arm seamer Dominic Drakes wide out off and over short fine. When he tried to repeat, Suryakumar fell, leaving India for 30 off 33 balls, which he did comfortably thanks to Rishabh Pant’s unbeaten 33 off 26 balls.

Siddharth Monga is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

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