After the 2019 World Cup, the focus in white-ball cricket has shifted to the T20 World Cup which is scheduled to take place in Australia next year. Both India and West Indies used this series as the start for their preparation for the mega event next year.
The Virat Kohli-led side put behind the World Cup semi-final loss as they won the three-match T20I series. In fact, it was a clean sweep and India have extended their win record against the West Indies to 6-0 in the last six T20Is.
India were absolutely clinical and dominated every game. In the first game, they restricted West Indies to 95 before defending 167 via Duckworth-Lewis in the second game. In the last game, they won in the final over as they hunted down 147 without too much fuss.
Hence, it was a clinical series for India while there were only a few positives for West Indies. Thus, as the series comes to a close, here we look at a combined XI from both sides from this series.
1. Rohit Sharma
Rohit Sharma during his fifty in 2nd T20I (Photo Source: Twitter)
India’s vice-captain played just two games in this series but looked in great touch once again. Rohit Sharma continued from where he left off in the World Cup as he scored 91 runs in two innings. In fact, he was one of the few batsmen that looked comfortable on a tricky surface in Florida.
He was the top-scorer for India in the first two games. The Mumbai batsman scored 24 in the first game in India’s chase of 96. Meanwhile, he scored a solid 67 in the second game as he gave India a strong start. Moreover, he scored eight fours and five sixes in the series as he set up the win in the first two T20Is.
2. KL Rahul
KL Rahul. (Photo Source: Twitter)
Barring Rohit Sharma, no other opener has got a lot of runs in this series. Shikhar Dhawan struggled to get going in all three innings. Meanwhile, Evin Lewis scored just 10 runs in three innings which included two ducks.
Thus, KL Rahul played just one game but was the only opener who looked fluent. In fact, he was set for a big knock but a poor stroke led to his downfall.
In the third T20I, he scored 20 which included two fours and a six as he got a solid start. However, the Karnataka batsman perished looking to go big.
3. Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli. (Photo Source: Twitter)
The Indian skipper looked good in every game of the series. Virat Kohli was hitting the ball well throughout the series but it was only in the last T20I that he converted his start.
Kohli was in good touch throughout the World Cup. He scored five half-centuries on the bounce. However, he scored a pair of 20s in the first two games and threw his wicket away. The India No. 3 fell to Sheldon Cottrell in both innings. However, he made up for those indifferent knocks as his half-century guided India to a win in the last game.
He finished the series with 106 runs which is the second-most in the series after Kieron Pollard. Thus, we might not have seen the best of Kohli, the T20 batsman in the first two games but he was in full flow in the final game.
4. Rishabh Pant
Rishabh Pant. (Photo Source: Twitter)
The emotions have ebbed and flowed for Rishabh Pant in this series. In the first couple of games, he looked silly when he got out. However, when he got it right, he made it count.
Pant registered a duck in the first game as he tried to slog sweep on the very first delivery and holed out. In the second game, he guided a short ball straight down third man’s throat. However, he was in the zone in the third T20I. Pant scored his maiden T20I fifty as he complemented Virat Kohli beautifully from the other end.
He displayed an array of shots as he took India home as he remained unbeaten on 65.
5. Kieron Pollard
Kieron Pollard. (Photo Source: ICC)
This was Kieron Pollard’s comeback series. The last time he was seen in West Indies colours was back in November last year in India. Before that, it was in England in 2017. He kept playing T20 leagues around the world but didn’t play for the Windies.
However, he was by far the best Windies batsman in this series. Pollard scored a run-a-ball 49 (out of the team’s total of 95) in the first T20I as his team were shot into submission. He remained unbeaten on 8 when the rain came down in the second game and he was at his best in the final T20I.
The Trinidad all-rounder hit sixes at will as he scored a fabulous half-century bailing West Indies out of trouble. Pollard scored 58 in 45 balls and finished the series with 115 runs. He was one of the few positives for West Indies in this three-match T20I series.
6. Rovman Powell
Rovman Powell. (Photo Source: Twitter)
Rovman Powell was another Windies batsman that looked good in the series. He missed out in the first game as he was dismissed for just four. However, he scored an excellent half-century in the second game as he bailed West Indies out of early trouble.
The 26-year-old all-rounder scored 54 from 34 balls which included six fours and three sixes as he gave Windies a chance during their chase of 167.
In the final game of the series, Powell gave his team a big flourish towards the end. He scored 32 in just 20 balls which helped Windies get to a competitive 146.
7. Krunal Pandya
Krunal Pandya. (Photo Source: Twitter)
The elder Pandya might not have had a great third game but overall, he had a pretty good series. Krunal Pandya picked up three wickets in as many games but he was one of the reasons for India’s good show with the ball throughout the series. The left-arm spinner may not have a heap of wickets to show but he bowled economically.
Pandya did really well in the first two T20Is. He returned with figures of 1/20 and 2/23 in the two games as India produced near clinical bowling performances. He was very tight with his line and length and also picked up key wickets in the middle.
Moreover, Krunal did well with the bat too. He struck an unbeaten 13-ball 20 which included a couple of big sixes in the second game. Thus, for his knock of 20 and two wickets, he was awarded as the player of the match.
8. Sunil Narine
Sunil Narine. (Photo by Ishara S.KODIKARA/AFP/Getty Images)
Sunil Narine may not have picked up a lot of wickets. In fact, he picked up wickets (two of them) only in the first game. However, the mystery spinner has been very economical in this series.
He returned with figures of 2/14 in the first game as he tried to make a match when Windies were defending 95. He went wicketless in the next couple of games as the Indian batsmen played him out. There were occasions where it looked difficult to play him.
This was Narine’s comeback series as well. The 31-year-old spinner last played for West Indies in September 2017 before this series. Thus, it was a decent return to the Maroon jersey for Narine.
9. Deepak Chahar
Deepak Chahar celebrates a wicket. (Photo Source: Twitter)
The 26-year-old fast bowler warmed the benches for the first couple of games as Khaleel Ahmed and Navdeep Saini stepped in. However, when Deepak Chahar got his chance in the final T20I, he was brilliant. He ripped through the West Indies top order and had them in early trouble.
Chahar got the ball to move both ways appreciably as he picked up three wickets in his first two overs. He bowled a terrific opening spell as he bowled three overs for four runs and three wickets.
He didn’t return to bowl another over. Moreover, despite playing just one game, the elder Chahar finished as the third-highest wicket-taker in the series.
10. Sheldon Cottrell
Sheldon Cottrell. (Photo by Alex Davidson/Getty Images)
Sheldon Cottrell has been one of the lone rangers with the ball for West Indies. He carried the burden in the World Cup and is doing the same here. The left-arm pacer was West Indies’ highest wicket in the World Cup and the story wasn’t too different in this series either.
Cottrell picked up four wickets and finished second on the bowling charts. No other Windies bowler got more wickets than the 29-year-old fast bowler. He troubled quite a few batsmen. Moreover, Cottrell picked up wickets of big names which included Virat Kohli twice.
Thus, it was a good series for Cottrell but he found very little support from the other end.
11. Navdeep Saini
Navdeep Saini celebration. (Photo Source: RANDY BROOKS/AFP/Getty Images)
This was Navdeep Saini’s debut series. The right-arm fast bowler’s ability to bowl at high speeds caught everybody’s attention. Though he was a tad expensive in the last two games, he picked up wickets consistently.
The Delhi pacer was the leading wicket-taker in this series. Saini was the player of the match in the first game when he took 3/17 on debut. However, he was taken for runs in the second game. He blew hot and cold in the third game as he got a couple of wickets.
Thus, Saini is making all the right noises and will hope to carry this good form into the ODI series.
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