HYDERABAD: Skipper Virat Kohli hit an unbeaten 94 off 50 balls as India beat West Indies by six wickets in the first Twenty20 international in Hyderabad on Friday.
Kohli put on a key 100-run second-wicket stand with KL Rahul, who made 62, as the hosts reached their target of 208 in 18.4 overs to lead the three-match series 1-0.
Kohli smashed six fours and six sixes to record his career-best T20 score, beating his previous high of 90 with a winning hit over the rope.
Earlier, batsman Shimron Hetmyer struck his maiden Twenty20 international half-century to lead West Indies to 207 for five.
The left-handed Hetmyer smashed 56 off 41 deliveries as West Indies posted a strong total after being put in to bat first at the start of the three-match series in Hyderabad.
Hetmyer’s 71-run fourth-wicket stand with skipper Kieron Pollard, who hit 37 off 19 balls, was the key on what seemed like a good batting pitch.
West Indies looked poised to get over 220 but leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal struck twice in three deliveries to get Hetmyer, who survived two dropped catches on 44 and 54, and Pollard trudging back to the pavilion.
Jason Holder then struck an unbeaten 24 off nine balls as West Indies managed 29 runs off the last two overs.
Evin Lewis, with his 17-ball 40, and Brandon King, who made 31, also made useful contributions.
The second match is in Thiruvananthapuram on Sunday.
L. Simmons c Sharma b Chahar 2
E. Lewis lbw b Sundar 40
B. King st Pant b Jadeja 31
S. Hetmyer c Sharma b Chahal 56
K. Pollard b Chahal 37
J. Holder not out 24
D. Ramdin not out 11
EXTRAS (LB-2, W-4) 6
TOTAL (for five wkts, 20 overs) 207
DID NOT BAT: K. Pierre, K. Williams, S. Cottrell, H. Walsh Jr.
FALL OF WKTS: 1-13, 2-64, 3-101, 4-172, 5-173.
BOWLING: Sundar 3-0-34-1 (w1), Chahar
4-0-56-1 (w2), Kumar 4-0-36-0, Jadeja 4-0-30-1, Chahal 4-0-36-2 (w1), Dube 1-0-13-0.
R. Sharma c Hetmyer b Pierre 8
K.L. Rahul c Pollard b Pierre 62
V. Kohli not out 94
R. Pant c Holder b Cottrell 18
S. Iyer c & b Pollard 4
S. Dube not out 0
EXTRAS (B-4, LB-2, NB-3, W-14) 23
TOTAL (for four wkts, 18.4 overs) 209
DID NOT BAT: R. Jadeja, W. Sundar,
D. Chahar, B. Kumar, Y. Chahal.
BOWLING: Cottrell 4-0-24-1, Holder 4-0-46-0 (2w, 1nb), Pierre 4-0-44-2 (3w), Walsh 2-0-19-0 (1nb), Williams 3.4-0-60-0 (1w, 2nb), Pollard
RESULT: India won by six wickets.
MAN-OF-THE-MATCH: Virat Kohli.
UMPIRES: Nitin Menon (India) and CK Nandan (India).
TV UMPIRE: Anil Chaudhary (India).
MATCH REFEREE: David Boon (Australia).
Published in Dawn, December 7th, 2019