India registered a 96-run victory in the third ODI to complete a 3-0 clean sweep of the series against the West Indies on Friday. While a series win was widely expected given the sheer dominance of India on their home turf, the fixtures did throw up a few positive surprises for the Men in Blue. The top order, for long India’s main strength, averaged just 17.33 in the series – the lowest ever for India in recent years. But the early dismissals of Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli allowed India’s middle-order to shine, with three fifty-plus scores being registered by them in the series.
Ahead of the much-awaited auction for the Indian T20 League 2022, we take a look at the standout players from India vs West Indies ODI series:
#5: YUZVENDRA CHAHAL AND KULDEEP YADAV
India’s once-famous spin duo made a spectacular comeback in the series as they tore through the Windies batting lineup on friendly pitches. Given an opportunity, both Chahal and Kuldeep used it to their best ability, making their case stronger for the future. Chahal was included in the squad for the first two ODIs, and the 31-year-old kept his end of the bargain.
In the first ODI, Chahal tore through Windies middle-order, taking the wickets of Shamarh Brooks, Nicholas Pooran and skipper Kieran Pollard in quick succession. With figures of 4-49, he won the Player of the Match award for limiting West Indies to just 176 runs. While the second ODI was dominated by Prasidh Krishna’s spells, Chahal took the crucial wicket of opener Shai Hope.
Rohit Sharma then decided to rest Chahal and allow Kuldeep Yadav in the third ODI, where the youngster picked up the wickets of Nicholas Pooran and Fabian Allen. While the duo is certainly talented, they will need to excel in the Indian T20 League to make their case for a regular spot in the squad.
#4: JASON HOLDER
Jason Holder was the sole bright spot for West Indies as they collapsed spectacularly in all three ODIs. The likes of Shai Hope, Brandon King and DM Bravo failed to spark in the series leaving it to the middle-order to come to the rescue. Jason Holder’s 71-ball 57-run innings was critical in taking the Windies to a respectable total in the first ODI. The all-rounder also shined with the ball, taking five wickets in the series at a decent economy rate of 4.55. That included a 4-fer in the third ODI, where he tore through India’s lower order to contain them to 265.
#3: SHREYAS IYER
Shreyas Iyer was given just one opportunity in the series to bat as India preferred to try debutant Deepak Hooda in the middle-order. But the Mumbai batsman used that opportunity to show his class as he went on to score 80 runs off 111 balls in an innings that included nine boundaries. His partnership with Rishabh Pant managed to stem the damage of a top-order collapse, making his case for more regular inclusion in the squad.
Shreyas Iyer excelled in the No.4 spot in 2019-20, scoring six half-centuries and one century in that period. Having spent most of his time last year recovering from a shoulder injury, Shreyas Iyer will be keen to get back into the Indian squad as well as brighten his prospects in the Indian T20 League. Incidentally, both Shreyas Iyer and Suryakumar Yadav love to play in the No.4 spot, giving the Men in Blue two solid options to fill the critical spot.
#2: SURYAKUMAR YADAV
Suryakumar Yadav is continuing his dream debut for Team India in ODIs as he finished the series as its top scorer. In the first ODI, Yadav partnered with debutant Deepak Hooda to chase the target without losing further wickets. It was in the second ODI that he showed his true colours, reviving the innings with a knock that reminded people of Michael Bevan.
India were just 43-3 when Yadav took the field, but he tagged along with KL Rahul to stitch together a 91-run partnership. His 64-run knockoff 83 balls included just five boundaries, with a strike rate of 77.11. With the return of Shreyas Iyer, Suryakumar Yadav was dropped to the No. 6 spot, where he failed to spark. In Shreyas Iyer, Deepak Hooda and Suryakumar Yadav, India found a solid middle-order combination that they can build well on their way to the World Cup.
#1: PRASIDH KRISHNA
The main standout player for India during the series has been Prasidh Krishna. India has not been devoid of pace talent in recent years, but the emergence of a tall hit-the-deck bowler in Prasidh Krishna is a welcome development for the team. His brilliant spell in the second ODI has even earned praise from skipper Rohit Sharma.
Prasidh Krishna picked up 9 wickets in three matches at a brilliant average of 7.56, which included a 4-fer in the third ODI. He also registered the best economy rate of 2.50 in the series, winning the Player of the Match award in the second ODI, where he took the wickets of Brandon King and Darren Bravo in quick succession to destabilise their innings.
Prasidh Krishna has now picked up 18 wickets in his first seven ODIs with the Men in Blue and is likely to emerge as a talented option for Rohit Sharma to look towards in the upcoming months as they face an action-packed year ahead.
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