Kohli, Pant help India grab 8-run victory

Kohli, Pant help India grab 8-run victory

Kohli, Pant help India grab 8-run victory
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Virat Kohli and Rishabh Pant’s half-centuries helped India grab 8-run series win over West Indies in the second T20I on Friday.

In response to 187, West indies managed to make only 178 while losing three wickets despite a threatening century stand between Nicholas Pooran (62) and Rovman Powell (unbeaten 68 off 36 balls) in Kolkata.

India clean sweeped West Indies 3-0 in the ODI series earlier this month. The Men in Blue are currently leading the 3-match T20I series by 2-0.

Pooran, a left-handed wicketkeeper-batsman, smashed five fours and three sixes in his 41-ball knock before falling to pace bowler Bhuvneshwar Kumar in a four-run 19th over.

With 25 needed off the final over, Powell attempted a final onslaught with two sixes off Harshal Patel but the bowler held his nerve.

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Off-spinner Roston Chase took three wickets after West Indies elected to bowl in skipper Kieron Pollard’s 100th T20I but Pant’s unbeaten 52 steered India to 186 for five.

The Indian batting wobbled after Kohli’s 52 but Pant, who hit an unbeaten 52 off 28 balls, and Venkatesh Iyer put on 76 runs for the fifth wicket to boost the total.

Pace bowler Sheldon Cottrell got Ishan Kishan caught behind for two after the left-handed opener’s struggle at the crease in a 10-ball stay.

Skipper Rohit Sharma and Kohli rebuilt the innings in their partnership of 49 with the former captain coming in all guns blazing with a string of boundaries.

Chase sent back Rohit for 19 and then caught and bowled Suryakumar Yadav for eight.

Kohli, who had scores of eight, 18 and nought in India’s 3-0 ODI sweep of West Indies and then 17 in the opening T20 win, overcame a brief lull to smash his 30th T20I fifty.

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He raised his 50 with a six off Chase, who finished with figures of 3-25, but was bowled two balls later after his 41-ball knock.

The left-handed batting pair of Pant and Iyer, who made 33 off 18 balls before being bowled by Romario Shepherd, then hit back to take the attack to the opposition.

The West Indies got off to a shaky start in their pursuit, losing Kyle Mayers for nine runs when he was caught and bowled by leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal.

Pooran smashed a few boundaries against the bowlers, but opener Brandon King was quickly out by Ravi Bishnoi’s leg spin.

Pooran, who was dropped at deep mid-wicket by Bishnoi on 21 and went on to raise his second consecutive fifty with a six, put up 100 with Powell.

The final match is on Sunday at the same venue.

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