The short T2O series between India and the West Indies ended with abandonment of the second match, giving the Caribbean a 1-0 series win. Picture would have been different if India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni could have succeeded in taking two runs off the last ball. Instead, he got out.
Chasing 246 for a win, India ended their run chase at 244 for 4 with Dhoni’s last ball dismissal, leaving Lokesh Rahul at 110 not out — his maiden T20I hundred.
“We did most things right. Whenever there was a partnership, we kept the asking rate at just 12. I felt Rahul was outstanding throughout. The others too were superb because it’s not always easy to chase down 250. A win would have been perfect, but there were so many things we did right today,” Dhoni, who scored 43 off 25 balls, added.
Talking about the match, Dhoni was pleased with his bowlers’ performance, especially leg-spinner Amit Mishra. “We did take a bit of risk with Mishra coming in replacing Binny because we were one batsman short. We realise on a wicket like this, we needed an extra bowler and a leg-spinner can give you wickets. It paid off well. Mishra bowled exceedingly well, he was able to put pressure and he was well supported by Ashwin. It’s fantastic effort by both of them.”
West Indies cricket team captain Carlos Brathwaite said that he gave the go-ahead to Bravo’s plan to bowl a slower ball to Dhoni.
“When Bravo said he was bowling a slower ball at the end, I told him that he had my backing. But in my mind I was thinking ‘really?’. We never do things easy, but we held our nerve. We couldn’t quite tell who was the home team. It was a great game of cricket,” he said.
Asked what he thought when his captain threw the ball to him to bowl the final over, Bravo said, “With nine runs to go, I said we didn’t have anything to lose. I’d like to test my skills in these kinds of situations.”
“We know what MS Dhoni can do. He can finish off the game with one hit. I wanted to ensure the first ball didn’t go for a boundary. I wanted to keep my composure and back my skills with the two balls: the slower one and the yorker,” Bravo said.
Asked to comment on cricket’s debut in the US, Dhoni said they would like to come back and play here more.