It was a much improved performance from the hosts this time around. They used the pace and bounce from the Antigua wicket very nicely.
It was a good bowling performance from Skipper Jason Holder as well, Holder won the toss for the 3rd consecutive time and like the first 2 ODIs he opted to bowl first.
India went with unchanged squad and the West Indies made two changes in their playing XI.
Windies include Kyle Hope and Kesrick Williams in place of Alzarri Joseph and Kieran Powell.
Indian openers who batted so well against West Indies in the 2 ODI matches couldn’t put on their 3rd hundred run opening stand in this match. If they had crossed the hundred run for the 3rd time in a row then it would have been a history for India.
Fortunately for the West Indies Shikhar Dhawan gave an easy catch to Roston Chase of Miguel Cummins’s bowling. Dhawan was out for just 2 runs.
West Indies had made a good start in this innings. But they needed to carry on this good work.
Bowling against a player like Virat Kohli it wasn’t easy, but West Indies had a plan to bowl short pitched deliveries to skipper Kohli. Jason Holder was the one who made good use of the short delivery and eventually Holder got rid of dangerous Virat Kohli for 11 runs.
India was in trouble after Kohli’s dismissal, they needed to build a strong partnership and Yuvraj Singh and Ajinkya Rahane did exactly that.
Rahane is having a wonderful series and has made good use of the opportunity entrusted to him. Rahane scored his 2nd fifty on the trot. He played a good hand in that partnership which crossed 50 run mark.
This partnership between Yuvi and Rahane was going on well; India also reached the 100 run mark. But West Indies came back in the match by breaking this crucial stand. Devendra Bishoo was the man who broke this stand by picking up the wicket of Yuvraj Singh for 39 runs.
But Rahane continued his class to the end. He went on to make another useful contribution. This time Rahane shared 70 run stand with MS Dhoni and that was the turning point of the match.
Dhoni started off slowly but made up for his slow start in the end. Dhoni and Rahane made sure that India cross the 150 run mark.
Unfortunately, Ajinkya Rahane got out on 72 runs. He missed his 2nd hundred.
MS Dhoni and Kedar Jhadav end the innings on a high. The combination of Best Finisher in the world and upcoming finisher steered India to a defendable total on this pitch.
MS Dhoni was not out on 78 runs. Dhoni became the second highest run scorer among wicketkeeper-batsmen. He also scored most international fifties as a wicketkeeper batsman.
Kedar Jhadav also played good hand. He and Dhoni scored quick runs when India needed it the most. Jhadav was also unbeaten on 40 runs.
In the end India managed a score of 251 for the loss of 4 wickets.
West Indies bowlers were good on this pitch, which offered pace and bounce. Miguel Cummins bagged two wickets and Skipper Jason Holder, Devendra Bishoo picked up 1 wicket each.
The chase of 252 was not going to be easy for the Windies and the Indian bowlers proved it right.
This time Umesh Yadav gave India some early bursts. Evin Lewis was gone for a duck in the 1st over itself.
Like the last few games West Indies batsmen lost the wickets at regular intervals. Debutant Kyle Hope too couldn’t impress more than his 19 runs.
Shai Hope who played well in the 2nd ODI was also dismissed for 24 runs.
West Indies can take some positive points from the partnership of 54 runs between Jason Mohammed and Rovman Powell. This partnership came in when Windies were struggling at 87 for the loss of 5 wickets.
Kuldeep Yadav is also having a dream series with the ball in hand. He is one who broke this small partnership and brought India on the winning track.
After the dismissal of Powell, Ashley Nurse and Jason Mohammed were dismissed very quickly.
Later Miguel Cummins and Kesrick Williams also couldn’t hang around.
West Indies were bowled out for just 158 in 38.1 overs.
Kuldeep Yadav and Ravichandran Ashwin was star with the ball for the Indians. The spin duo picked up 3 wickets each.
Hardik Pandya too contributed with the ball. He also picked up 2 wickets.
Umesh Yadav and Kedar Jhadav also joined the party. They had 1 wicket each to their name.
Man of the match was awarded for the fine innings played by MS Dhoni. His 78 run knock gave India a score that they could bowl against. This man of the match award was Dhoni’s 21st one of his ODI career.
Next match is on Sunday 2nd July 2017 at North Sound in Antigua.