India on knife’s edge as West Indies win


Express May 09, 2010

India face the same situation as Pakistan in the Super Eight after losing to hosts West Indies by 14 runs in Bridgetown.

Set 170 to win, India’s hyped-up batting lineup, minus Suresh Raina and Mahendra Dhoni, failed to make any headway as they were restricted to 155. The top-order collapse and failures of Yuvraj Singh and Rohit Sharma put the Indians on the back foot as they were reduced to 81 for five. Dhoni and Harbhajan Singh gave them something to cheer about with a flurry of boundaries towards the end but following the captain’s dismissal, Harbhajan was left with too much to do.

Earlier, West Indies captain Chris Gayle fell agonisingly short of an unprecedented second Twenty20 international hundred as they cruised to 169. Gayle struck five fours and seven sixes in a typically enterprising 98 off only 66 balls after play had started thirty minutes late because of a damp pitch. Gayle got a life when he was dropped at square-leg on 46 after top-edging a pull off Ashish Nehra in the 12th over. Dhoni and Yusuf Pathan ran into each other as the ball fell safely.

Fellow left-hander Shivnarine Chanderpaul, a passenger in an opening stand of 80 with Gayle, failed to make use of a dropped chance on 12 and was caught behind off Nehra but the rest of the batsmen ensured a respectable total was reached. After having lost both Super Eight matches, India now hope that other results go their way and they beat Sri Lanka by a big margin in their last match as well.

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