India beat West Indies by 4 wickets in the first T20I in Florida on Saturday to take a 1-0 lead in the three-match series. India’s young bowlers breathed fire to restrict the home team to 95/9 in the first innings. Chasing the target of 96, India also lost regular wickets, but managed to chase down the target with 2.4 overs to spare.
Toss: India won the toss and elected to field first.
— BCCI (@BCCI) August 3, 2019
India got off to a strong start as Washington Sundar provided the Men In Blue with a breakthrough in the first over. Things got worse for the hosts, as they lost Evin Lewis for 0 in the following over. Debutant Navdeep Saini made matters worse for the hosts as he picked two wickets in consecutive deliveries. Khaleel Ahmed also joined the party in the sixth over as he dismissed Rovman Powell for 4. Kieron Pollard and Carlos Brathwaite tried to revive the Windies innings as the pair added 34 runs for the sixth wicket. The Windies skipper was removed by Krunal Pandya, who took a sharp catch on his follow-through. Sunil Narine also couldn’t do much as he was removed by Ravindra Jadeja in the next over. Saini completed India’s clinical display by removing Kieron Pollard for 49 in the 20th over, restricting West Indies to 95/9 in 20 overs.
India lost Shikhar Dhawan early in the innings, as he was removed by Sheldon Cottrell for 1. Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma tried to stabilise the Indian chase but Rohit fell right after the powerplay. Rishabh Pant also missed out as he was removed on a golden duck by Sunil Narine. Manish Pandey toiled for a while before he was cleaned up by Keemo Paul for 19. Cottrell then went on to dismiss Kohli in the very next over. Krunal Pandya and Ravindra Jadeja marshalled the chase towards the target then onwards. Washington Sundar clubbed the last ball of the match for a six for the winning runs.
We didn’t assess the conditions well. Kudos to Polly (Pollard) for leading the team with the bat, showed his experience. 130-140 would have been good on that wicket. We showed great heart to take the game as deep as we did and it shows that we batted ourselves out of the game with out lack of assessment early.
The bowling and fielding was right up there. The pitch wasn’t great to be honest, but they couldn’t have done much with all the rain around and the covers being on for three odd days. Saini is a raw talent, has raw pace. He is one of them who can bowl 150 clicks and there are hardly any who bowl at that pace and he is fit. He is someone who can build a name for himself and he is hungry as well. Hopefully he builds on from here.
Man of the Match: Navdeep Saini
Brief Scores: WI 95/9 (20) | IND 98/6 (17.2 overs)
The two teams will play the 2nd T20I at the same venue on Sunday.