After the heartbreaking loss in the World Cup semi-final last month, the ‘Men in Blue’ got back to winning ways in the 50-over format as they beat West Indies 2-0 to clinch the three-match ODI series. They had whitewashed the Windies in the T20Is as well. Hence, this 2-0 ODI series win was their ninth successive bilateral series win over the Caribbeans in the 50-over format.
The first game of the series was washed out due to rain as only 13 overs of play was possible. However, the next two games were also affected by rain but we did get results. In both the games, India were driven by skipper Virat Kohli’s tons and Shreyas Iyer chipped in with excellent contributions. With the ball, the pacers were effective and the spinners chipped in decently too.
For the Windies, Chris Gayle played his last ODI and was brilliant in the third game. Evin Lewis showed decent consistency while they largely struggled with the ball. Hence, with the ODI series coming to an end, we form the best performing XI from the series.
Here’s the best XI of the series:
Chris Gayle. (Photo by Ashley Allen/Getty Images)
It wasn’t a great series for the Indian openers. Rohit Sharma failed in both innings while Shikhar Dhawan got one score of 36. On the other hand, Chris Gayle failed in the first two games as well. He struggled to get going and was tied down by the Indian bowlers.
However, the Universe Boss got stuck into the Indian bowling attack in the third ODI. Once again, he got off to a sedate start as Bhuvneshwar Kumar bowled a maiden first up. However, he struck a huge six off a free-hit and that got him going. Trinidad was hit with a Gayle-storm as the big Jamaican opener smashed the Indian bowlers to all parts of the ground.
Gayle struck a fabulous 72 off just 40 balls (eight fours and five sixes) before he was dismissed by Khaleel Ahmed. It was his final ODI and the entire Indian team walked up to congratulate him. He received a standing ovation from the crowd as well as he bowled out on a high.
Evin Lewis. (Photo Source: ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP/Getty Images)
Evin Lewis was the most consistent opening batsman in this ODI series. He got a start in every game. In fact, Lewis struggled big time in the T20I series as he registered two ducks and scored just 10 in the third T20I. However, he turned it around in the 50-over format.
Even in the first game that was washed out, it was Evin Lewis who shifted a bit of momentum before the rain came down. He scored an unbeaten 40 in that first game which was rained off. It was his innings of 65 which kept Windies in the hunt in the second game while they were chasing 270 from 46 overs. In the third game, he once again got off to an excellent start along with Chris Gayle. Lewis scored 43 off 29 balls before throwing it away.
Hence, the 27-year-old opener was in full flow at the top of the order in this series. He was one of the few positives for West Indies in what was a rather disappointing ODI leg of this tour.
Virat Kohli (C)
Virat Kohli. (Photo Source: Twitter)
The Indian captain was absolutely brilliant in this series. He had a rather underwhelming World Cup according to his standards where he scored 443 runs in nine innings. He wasn’t able to convert five successive half-centuries. However, he was in the zone in this series.
Kohli was the man for India in this series as he got back to back tons, leading India to a series win. He scored 120 in the second game as he helped India get to a 280 in their 50 overs. While all other batsmen struggled, Kohli put on a masterclass. In the third game, the chase-master was at work as a 99-ball 114 from Kohli helped India hunt down 256 inside 33 overs.
The Indian captain was the player of the match in both the games and was eventually awarded with the player of the series award as well. Kohli was in prime form and he put away the disappointment of the World Cup. He got to 43 ODI tons and is just seven away from breaking the great Sachin Tendulkar’s record.
Shreyas Iyer. (Photo Source: Twitter)
By far, India’s biggest positive in this ODI series was the way Shreyas Iyer batted. India’s search for a No. 4 was still alive when they came to the Caribbean. Rishabh Pant may have batted at the coveted spot throughout the white-ball leg. However, it was Iyer who was brilliant with the bat in the middle order.
Returning to the ODI side after a break of more than 18 months, Iyer struck the ball really well and was the only other Indian batsman who looked in great touch. In both games, Iyer scored excellent fifties and shared brilliant partnerships with Virat Kohli to help India recover from dicey situations. He took the pressure off the Indian captain in both games.
The Mumbai-born batsman scored 71 in the second game which helped India post 280 batting first. Meanwhile, while chasing 256 (from 35 overs), India lost back to back wickets and wobbled a touch. But Iyer ensured India hunted down the target with ease. He struck a brilliant 41-ball 65 which included three fours and five sixes. He showed he has the power game too. Hence, Iyer showed that he deserves a spot in that middle order regularly.
Nicholas Pooran (WK)
Nicholas Pooran. (Photo Source: Twitter)
It was a pretty frustrating series for Nicholas Pooran. The left-handed batsman was West Indies’ leading run-getter in the World Cup and he continued his good form. However, he couldn’t convert his starts.
Pooran was hitting the ball really well and threatened to get a big score. But he just couldn’t convert solid starts. In the second game, the left-hander looked set and was threatening to take Windies close but threw it away. He was dismissed for 42. In the final ODI, he was hitting the ball cleanly. He struck three sixes and a four in his enterprising 16-ball knock where he scored 30.
Hence, while Pooran continued to hit the ball well, it was frustrating to see him throw away starts. There’s no doubt that he will be a big part of the Windies side in the future but they will hope he can convert these starts.
Roston Chase. (Photo by Ahmed Salahuddin/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
Roston Chase was overlooked for the World Cup. However, he played for West Indies ‘A’ and did well. He didn’t get a lot of opportunities with the bat. He batted in just one game and scored a good-looking 18 before he was outdone by Bhuvneshwar Kumar.
Moreover, it was surprising not to see him bat in the third game. The likes of Fabien Allen and Keemo Paul were sent ahead of him as Windies needed some quick runs. However, he was decent with the ball. He bowled a very good spell in the second game. He returned with figures of 1/37 from his 10 overs.
In the third encounter, Chase was the most economical bowler for the Windies. He was struck for a couple of sixes but he did offer some control in the middle. Hence, it was a decent series for the off-spinning all-rounder.
Ravindra Jadeja and Virat Kohli. (Photo Source: Twitter)
In the absence of Hardik Pandya and after the performance in the World Cup semi-final, Ravindra Jadeja was a certainty in the XI. However, he didn’t get a lot of time in the middle with the bat. He batted in just one game and scored an unbeaten run-a-ball 16.
Even with the ball, he was used sparingly. He bowled a total of 10 overs across three games in this series. With a number of left-handers present in the Windies top-order, Virat Kohli was a touch hesitant to use Jadeja. However, the left-handed all-rounder did well in the limited opportunities he got in this series.
In the last couple of games, Jadeja bowled economically and also picked up a wicket in each game. Hence, he finished the series with figures of 2/47 from three games. Moreover, as usual, he was a live wire in the field.
Virat Kohli and Bhuvneshwar Kumar. (Photo Source: Twitter)
In the absence of Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar was India’s pace spearhead in the white-ball leg. He bowled well in the T20Is and continued his good form in the ODIs as well. With the new ball, he was excellent as he troubled the Windies openers more often than not.
In fact, he moved the ball and tied down the likes of Gayle and Lewis. However, in the third game, after Bhuvneshwar’s first couple of overs, he was hit all around the part as Evin Lewis and Chris Gayle went berserk. But it is his performance in the first ODI which was very good. He picked up 4/31 as he led India to a victory.
The Meerut pacer was the one who turned the game with two wickets in one over, dismissing both set batsmen. Hence, it went haywire in the last few overs of the series for Bhuvneshwar but he did well overall.
Mohammed Shami. (Photo Source: Twitter)
When India decided to leave Mohammed Shami out for the semi-final of the World Cup, it was a pretty surprising decision. The Bengal pacer has been in great rhythm this year, especially in white-ball cricket. He was bowling aggressively and picking up wickets.
He continued to do the same in this series as well. With Jasprit Bumrah rested, Shami got a chance and picked up four wickets in the series. In the second game, Shami wiped out the tail and finished with 2/39. Meanwhile, in the third game, he was taken for aplenty at the start (in his first spell). However, he came back strongly.
The 28-year-old fast bowler came back to pick up two big wickets of Shimron Hetmyer and Nicholas Pooran. He was the one who kept the run flow in check at the death in that third ODI. Hence, it was a good series for Shami as well.
Sheldon Cottrell. (Photo by Alex Davidson/Getty Images)
Sheldon Cottrell has been West Indies’ premier white-ball, fast bowler, this year. The left-arm pacer has regularly been amongst the wickets and has led the Windies pace attack. He was excellent in the World Cup and was the team’s best bowler in the tournament.
He continued his form in the T20Is in the lead up to this series and was decent in the ODI series as well. Cottrell played just two games and bowled in only one (the other game was washed out). He was very good with the new ball as he troubled the Indian openers and also accounted for Shikhar Dhawan. He bowled 10 overs in the second ODI and returned with figures of 1/49.
Hence, it was surprising to see Cottrell not start in the playing XI in the last ODI. Thus, he is the only West Indian bowler in this combined XI as most of the others disappointed.
Kuldeep Yadav. (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)
2019 hasn’t been the best year for Kuldeep Yadav. The chinaman has struggled for consistency and hasn’t been able to produce the goods. In fact, he was even dropped from the playing XI towards the back end of the World Cup. Wickets had dried up and batsmen had started to line him up as well.
However, this series should give him some confidence going forward. With a number of left-handers in West Indies’ top-order, he started ahead of Yuzvendra Chahal in the first two games. In the first game, he knocked over Chris Gayle and was looking good.
In the second game, he blew hot and cold but he picked up a couple of important wickets. He dismissed Evin Lewis and Shimron Hetmyer and finished his 10 overs with figures of 2/59. Hence, it was a decent series for Kuldeep.
SportsInfo offers cricket, soccer, kabaddi, tennis, badminton, racing, basketball and other sports news, articles, videos, live coverage & live scores, player rankings & team rankings. Also, offers minute details of any match along with live commentary.
- Chris Gayle the person is the best part of him: Virat Kohli
- Windies vs India 2019, 3rd ODI – India’s fortress, Kohli’s records, Rohit’s lowest as opener and more stats
- Windies vs India: Virat Kohli shares an update after copping a blow on his thumb from Kemar Roach
- Stats: Virat Kohli completes 10000 runs in International cricket as captain
- Team India gives Chris Gayle heartwarming farewell as he signs off