A record-breaking innings from tailender Ravi Rampaul was not enough as brilliant century by Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma (90) put up 162-run partnership for the fourth wicket to take India to a comfortable five wickets win and gave host two-nil lead in the five-match series.
Rampaul, who came into the match with an average of 9.47 and a top score of 26 not out, thrashed six sixes and as many fours to finish unbeaten on 86 from 66 deliveries, eclipsing Mohammad Amir’s 73no, the previous best score by a number 10 in ODI cricket.
After losing opener Parthiv Patel (2) in the second over, the Windies seemed well on track to defend their total. Gautam Gambhir failed to do much damage as Rampaul claimed his wicket for 12 runs.
Rain halted the play for a while and after that skipper Virender Sehwag fell to a Samuels delivery for 26 sending Rohit Sharma to join Kohli. The two went ahead with their business unawares to frustrate the Windies bowlers and lead India’s march ahead.
Rampaul struck for the second time in the match to pick up the crucial wicket of Kohli. But with only 23 required to win off 30 balls.
But with Kohli back in the hut and Suresh Raina undone by a short ball for a first-ball duck, there was still some work for Rohit and Ravindra Jadeja to do in the face of a pressing asking rate.
Unlike in the last game, Sharma was hell bent on finishing the game for his side this time around. India reached the target with eleven balls to spare.
Earlier tourists reached 269 runs for the loss of nine wickets at the end of their allotted 50 overs. The impressive thing about this innings was that the team was struggling at one stage with nine wickets down and just 170 runs on the board.
Tail-enders Ravi Rampaul and Kemar Roach, who were batting at number nine and ten respectively, played brilliantly and made sure that they did not throw their wicket away. The pair put together 99 runs for the final wicket partnership, guiding the total to 269 in the end.
Rampaul was the star of the show for the Caribbean Kings, as he top scored with an unbeaten 86 runs off just 66 balls. The tall left-handed batsman smashed the bowlers to all parts of the park and finished with six fours and the same number of sixes.
On the other hand, Roach provided terrific support to Rampaul, who was attacking the bowlers and scored an unbeaten 24 off 35 balls with the help of three boundaries.
At the start of the match, India’s stand in skipper Virender Sehwag decided to field after winning the toss. The pitch was a flat one, but seemed to have some moisture beneath it.
This was the reason why the Windies side struggled at the start of their innings and wickets fell on regular intervals.
Opener Adrian Barath was the first man to be dismissed in the innings after failing to open his account. He was followed by Marlon Samuels, who only managed four runs in his short stay at the crease.
In form middle-order batsman Darren Bravo was unable to guide his side out of trouble this time around, as he got out after scoring 13 runs.
This saw the middle-order struggle against the Indian bowlers and the visitors were five down for 63 runs at one stage of the innings.
Explosive all-rounder Kieron Pollard played a cameo of 35 whereas opener Lendl Simmons ended up with 78 runs. However, with nine wickets down for 170, it appeared as if the Windies would be dismissed within 200, but Rampaul and Roach took the game away from the opposition.