West Indies levelled the three-match T20I series against India after a handsome win over hosts India at the Greenfield International Stadium, Thiruvananthapuram on December 9, 2019. The home side had won the first match at Hyderabad after chasing down a record 207 runs with Virat Kohli scoring his T20I best 94* and KL Rahul making 62 runs.
However, the second match turned on its head as Kieron Pollard won the toss and chose to bowl first on a pitch that was slow and the ball stuck on the square. West Indies chased down the target of 171 runs with much aplomb thanks to the start given by Evin Lewis (40) and Lendl Simmons (67*).
The openers put on 73 runs in 10 overs, while Hetmyer also scored 23 runs. The finish came quickly thanks to Nicholas Pooran who smashed a quickfire 38* in 18 balls with 4 fours and 2 sixes and took the team home with 8 wickets in hand.
Ravichandran Ashwin praises his former KXIP teammate Nicholas Pooran
The left-handed keeper-batsman has been in brilliant form ever since returning to national contention after recovering from an accident. He made a century against Sri Lanka in the 2019 World Cup. In the recently concluded series against Afghanistan in Lucknow, he was amongst runs, before he was banned for altering the condition of the ball.
Pooran returned to the Windies team after missing four matches, including the first T20I match and showed why he is valued so much by the new-look team management and captain Kieron Pollard. Even his former KXIP teammate and captain Ravichandran Ashwin took to Twitter to praise him and tweeted, “This guy Pooran 🤷🏼♂️.. ( special )”
This guy Pooran 🤷🏼♂️.. ( special )
— Ashwin Ravichandran (@ashwinravi99) December 8, 2019
Team India had to bat first and managed to crawl to 170 runs for the loss of 7 wickets with Shivam Dube making his maiden T20I fifty, Rishabh Pant making 33* and contributions from Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli, who failed to carry on despite getting starts. West Indies bowlers did amazingly well with Kesrick Williams picking 2/30 including the wicket of Kohli, which resulted in a muted celebration, shushing the crowd.
Hayden Walsh also managed two wickets for 28 runs. Indian bowlers tried their hardest to defend the total, but dew and some extremely poor fielding with Sundar dropping a catch and misfielding from the likes of Jadeja led to the home side losing the match.
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