Axar Patel (B) and Mohammed Siraj (F) celebrate winning the 2nd ODI match at Queens Park Oval, Port of Spain, on Sunday. AFP
India leads the three-match ODI series 2-0 against West Indies.
Earlier, the West Indies won the toss and chose to bat first at Queen’s Park Oval, reaching 311-6 thanks to Hope’s 135-ball 115 — with eight fours and three sixes — and 74 from captain Nicholas Pooran, who clouted six sixes. India chased down the imposing target, scoring 312-8 in 49.4 overs.
Chasing a mammoth 312 for victory is always an uphill task and India were in a sport of bother when they required 100 from the last 10 overs with Axar and Deepak Hooda at the crease and just five wickets remaining on Sunday night.
Romario Shepherd celebrates dismissing Sanju Samson during the second ODI match. AP
But the two combined patience with pluck and found the boundaries when needed to chase down the target with just two balls remaining. With Hooda departing for 33 in the 45th over, it was left to Patel to complete the task as the all-rounder hit five sixes and three boundaries in his 35-ball 64 to complete the job.
As well as No.7 Patel's match-winning innings, key knocks came from Shreyas Iyer (63 runs in 71 balls), Sanju Samson (54 in 51) and opener Shubman Gill (43 in 49).
India started the last over needing eight runs for victory but with only two wickets left. Medium pacer Kyle Mayers (2-48) bowled the over and only two runs came off his first three deliveries, leaving India still requiring six runs off three balls. Patel only need the one, smashing Mayers' fourth delivery for six.
The series-concluding ODI is on Wednesday.
Both teams will depart for Zimbabwe at the end of the series for their World Cup qualifying campaign which begins on June 18. The all-important tournament will confirm the remaining two spots for the 10-team ICC Cricket World Cup 2023, India.
The final match of the series marks Pakistan skipper Babar Azam's 100th ODI in a glorious career which began in 2015.
Despite that and defeat in the final match on Sunday, Azam was in buoyant mood. "Winning the series is great and so is achieving number one ranking that has set us in a good position for the World Cup," said the skipper.
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