West Indies were denied the chance to win the five-match T20I series before it transferred to the United States thanks to a tenacious Suryakumar Yadav, whose 44-ball 83 was essential to India’s easy seven-wicket victory in pursuit of 159/5. Tilak Varma, who was with Suryakumar, continued from his fifty from the previous game to get an undefeated 49 off 37 and put an end to the pursuit after the former was dismissed.
Beginnings of Suryakumar Yadav and Tilak Varma
Yashasvi Jaiswal, a rookie, misplayed a powerful shot across the line on a slower ball from Obed McCoy, and Suryakumar stepped out to bat on the fifth delivery of the first over. By blasting the first ball he saw for a four over mid-wicket and then following it up with a pull-over square leg for a six, Suryakumar immediately declared his deadly intent for the evening. He then knelt down before Akeal Hosein, preparing to play a sweep but cutting it over point instead.
When he dismissed Shubman Gill, Alzarri Joseph dealt India a second blow in the PowerPlay, but Tilak Varma entered and started akin to Suryakumar’s. He was hammered for fours by both of the first two balls he faced, through extra cover and then over short third man. In the last PowerPlay over, the pair dismantled McCoy to help India reach 60/2 in 6 overs.
Tilak remained at the non-striker’s end to observe the usual carnage as Suryakumar carried on with his shots and quickly achieved his fifty in only 23 balls. There was no relief for the West Indies bowlers even when it started to drizzle because Suryakumar was in impeccable form and unleashed one bold shot after another. Romario Shepherd made an effort to alter the game’s path by slowing down the ball in opposition to the swashbuckler, but ineffectively as Suryakumar saw through him and found a way to shift over and hit him over fine leg and backward point. The asking rate dropped to only 6.30 an over as India cruised to 97 for 2 in 10 overs.
If rain made a bigger intervention than just the drizzle that was present, Suryakumar’s desperation to get India on the series scoresheet ensured India was well ahead of the DLS par score. When Suryakumar died from an innocent leg side ball that he flicked with all of his might straight to Brandon King at fine leg, he appeared to be on track to even reach a hundred before finishing the chase.
The finishing touches by Tilak and Hardik Pandya
After Suryakumar left, Tilak regained control and made sure there weren’t any last-minute mistakes like there had been in the first game of the series. With Powell’s six down the track in the 18th over, Hardik Pandya closed off the chase, leaving Tilak one short of his second consecutive T20I fifty.