India improved their preparation for the next Twenty20 World Cup with a 59-run series win over the West Indies in the fourth of a five-game series at Broward County Stadium in Florida on Saturday. Rohit Sharma defended a formidable total of 191 for five in front of fiercely partisan Indian supporters at the United States venue, sending their opponents off for 132 from 19.1 overs. India take an unbeatable 3-1 lead in the series ahead of the final match at the same venue on Sunday.
Arshdeep Singh led the bowling effort for India, the left-arm medium pacer continued to impress with his clever combination of swing and seam to take three for 12, finishing the match with Obed McCoy’s wicket.
For McCoy, who set a new West Indian bowling record in T20Is in the second game in St Kitts last Monday with numbers six to 17, this was a most memorable experience.
Despite taking two wickets, the left-armed bowler got 66 runs over his four overs, the most expensive spell ever by a West Indian bowler in this format.
India continued their policy of all-out attack after going head-to-head with Rishabh Pant leading the effort for the highest order with 44 from 31 balls.
Each of the top five started and while none were able to carry on for a truly impressive innings, their pace of scoring ensured that the final total would always be challenging on a surface where free flowing stroke play was becoming increasingly difficult.
“We knew it wasn’t going to be easy because of the circumstances,” Sharma said after the game.
“I thought we had a good score on the board, but we couldn’t take things for granted. Our bowlers did extremely well to keep making crucial breakthroughs.”
For West Indies captain Nicholas Pooran, the margin of defeat was just a reminder of the amount of work the two-time former champions needed ahead of the qualifying stage for the T20 World Cup in Australia in October.
His resignation for 24, running out after carting left arm spinner Axar Patel for a succession of boundaries, typified West Indian frustration.
“The series may be over as a game, but the final game gives other players a chance to raise their hands for the World T20,” Pooran said, hinting at some changes ahead of Sunday’s final.
“They got off to a flying start by hitting first, but at least I was really happy with the way the bowlers kept up with the task.”
(This story was not edited by The AU Times staff and was generated automatically Platforms.)
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