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King, Shepherd Lead West Indies To Series Win


West Indies won the fifth and final encounter in superb fashion on Sunday afternoon to take the series 3-2 against the Number 1 ranked team, India.

Led by career-best bowling from seamer Romario Shepherd and a career-best knock by Brandon King, the West Indies recoded an easy victory just after 3pm.

Asked to make 166 in the decisive fifth game, West Indies motored to the target with two overs to spare.

Opener King was at the forefront of the run chase, top-scoring with 85 not out off 55 balls with five fours and half-dozen sixes, marking his seventh half century in his 40th game of the format.

He added 107 for the second wicket with Man-of-the-Series Nicholas Pooran, whose 47 required just 35 balls and included one four and four sixes.

The partnership turned the game in West Indies’ favour and when Pooran departed just following a 40-minute break for rain, Shai Hope arrived to smack a breezy unbeaten 22 from 13 balls, in a 52-run unbroken third wicket partnership with King, as West Indies celebrated the emphatic victory.

King raced to his half century of 38 balls, bringing up his landmark in the 13th over by lifting leg spinner Yuzvendra Chahal over the ropes at long off.

He continued merrily, twice clearing the ropes for back-to-back sixes at the end of the 16th over from Chahal, before hitting Varma for a straight six in the next over and left West Indies needing only six runs to win.

Hope put the finishing touches on a clinical chase when he smashed leg-spinner YB Jaiswal back over head for a straight six at the end of the 18th.

“It’s difficult to put words to it. Adjectives are inadequate in describing how we feel. The guys are elated. It’s a big series. You mention all the stuff that is going on in West Indies cricket, so it’s a very big series for us to beat India at home,” captain Rovman Powell said.

Earlier, Shepherd had set the stage for the domination, picking up a career-best 4-31 off his four overs to help restrict India to 165-9 off their 20 overs.

Left-arm spinner Akeal Hosein (2-24) and semer Jason Holder (2-36) both ended with two wickets apiece. Only Suryakumar Yadav with 61 from 45 balls and Tilak Varma, with 27 from 18 balls, showed any enterprise and were the only ones to pass 20.

SOURCE: Cricket West Indies

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