Deccan Chronicle

GILLORIOUS!

Shubman top scores as India amass 351/5 in decider

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Tarouba (Trinidad), Aug. 1: Shubman Gill tapered off after a blazing start but Ishan Kishan’s golden run of form and Sanju Samson’s impactful fifty powered India a commanding 351 for five against the West Indies in the third ODI here on Tuesday.

Skipper Hardik Pandya’s smashing 70 off 52 balls helped India cross the 350-run mark as he provided the finishing touches to the innings with four boundaries and five sixes.

Gill, who has had a quiet Caribbean sojourn so far, finally found some rhythm with 85 off 92 balls but the way he sowed down after a superb start in powerplay did hurt India between overs 30 and 40.

Kishan (77 off 64 balls) added 143 for the opening wicket with Gill to set the platform and should have converted his third consecutiv­e half-century into a hundred. The duo hit 11 boundaries in the first Powerplay to set the tone.

For Kishan, the performanc­e in this series will keep him in good stead ahead of Asia Cup but the bigger question remains about his batting position in case K. L. Rahul isn’t fit for the tourney. The chances of Rohit Sharma sacrificin­g his place at the top of the order to accommodat­e Kishan are slim.

And then if Kishan is asked to bat in the middle-order — No 4 or 5, would it be fair to ask him to perform at that slot straightaw­ay?

Samson, one of the contenders for the No. 4 slot in case Shreyas Iyer doesn’t get fit in time for the World Cup, gave a good glimpse of his talent and enthralled his millions of followers on social media.

His innings had four lusty sixes — three off leg-spinner Yannic Cariah, where he got his front-foot out of the way to hit some glorious inside-out shots.

But just as it has been Samson’s bane, he failed to convert his fourth half-century into a big one despite a whole lot of time at his disposal.

Skipper Hardik did take India past 300-run mark with their T20 styled stroke-play during death overs.

Suryakumar Yadav (35) did hit his customary pick-up shot — a six behind square with little width to manoeuvre and also a slashed six off Jayden Seals but once again wasted a golden opportunit­y to make a mark. Hardik and Suryakumar added 65 runs in 8.1 overs for the fifth wicket.

 ?? — AP ?? Ishan Kishan plays a shot on way to his 77 against the West Indies during the third ODI at the Brian Lara Stadium in Tarouba, Trinidad and Tobago, on Monday.
— AP Ishan Kishan plays a shot on way to his 77 against the West Indies during the third ODI at the Brian Lara Stadium in Tarouba, Trinidad and Tobago, on Monday.

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