Monday, December 5, 2011
Cricket: Another Thriller! This Time West Indies Win!
The third one day cricket match between India and West Indies played at Ahmedabad was another edge-of –the-seat affair with fortunes fluctuating both ways. But finally today the Ravi Rampaul boost galvanized his team to a thrilling win by 16 runs.
West Indies could not win even after Rampaul’s world record making effort for the last wicket in the second one-day international at Visakhapatnam. Today Rampaul took the vital wickets of skipper Sehwag and top order pillar Gambhir for ducks in his very first two balls of the match. At a crucial juncture again he got rid of another mainstay batsman Suresh Raina and finished off the match with the wicket of Mithun who replaced Varun Aaron for this match. But the win was not a cakewalk till the last four overs.
India at 105 for 6 the match seemed to be over. But the tremendously consistent Rohit Sharma completed his third half century of the series and evolved yet another partnership of 91 runs with Ashwin who was confident after his first test century. When Ashwin was the seventh out at 196 the match was far from over. Varun got out cheaply and made it 200 for 8. But as long as Rohit was out there victory was in sight. Fans gave up with Rohit run out to a direct throw by Indies skipper Sammy at the score of 216 for 9. But the match was still not over. Debutant Mithun was producing huge sixes out of nowhere and Umesh Yadav was beginning to join in for an incredible victory. But finally the man of the match Ravi Rampaul sealed a win for his team at 244 all out for India.
Earlier for the third time Sehwag won the toss and put the West Indies in. It was a steadily built innings with a finishing touch provided by skipper Sammy and all rounder Russel who scored 93 runs in the last 7 overs giving India a challenging target of 261 (for 5 wickets) runs on a ground not India’s favorite by the records. Bowling inexperience showed for Team India and their fielding too was not much to write home about.
Though millions of Indian fans wanted their team to clinch the one-day cricket series they were not unhappy either with the final result. With all top ranking batsmen falling in heaps you cannot really expect your team to win, but still they go home getting their money’s worth. The only tragedy of the match could be Rohit not carrying on till his well deserved century and being a match winner for the third time around in as many matches.
West Indies keep their hopes alive in the series poised at 2-1 in favor of India. Considering the visitors’ charged all-round performance today the remaining two matches are bound to be very exciting and keenly contested.
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