Saini dazzles on debut as India humbles Windies to go 1-0 up

Opting to field, all the six Indian bowlers got at least a wicket, with Saini returning figures of three for 17 on his debut.

Saini picked three wickets on his debut.   -  TWITTER| @BCCI

India beat the West Indies by four wickets in the first T20 International match here on Saturday, to go 1-0 up in the three-match T20I series.

Chasing a modest 96 to win, India lost six wickets in a run chase that threatened to fall by the side at one point with Sunil Narine removing Rohit Sharma and Rishabh Pant off successive deliveries.

But skipper Virat Kohli, in company of Manish Pandey, brought India on the doorstep of victory before falling to Cottrell for 19.

But Ravindra Jadeja and Sundar ensured India got over the line without further damage.

As it happened| Saini, Bhuvneshwar shine as India goes 1-0 up

Dream debut

Debutant pacer Navdeep Saini claimed three wickets in an impressive spell as India restricted West Indies to a paltry 95 for nine in their first T20I here on Saturday.

Opting to field, all the six Indian bowlers got at least a wicket, with Saini returning figures of three for 17 on his debut. The Indians were also helped by the reckless approach of the West Indian batsmen.

There was no substantial partnership in the West Indies innings, the highest being the 34 between captain Carlos Brathwaite (9) and top-scorer Kieron Pollard (49) for the sixth wicket. Nicholas Pooran (20) was the only other West Indies batsman to touch double digits.

Miserable start

India opened the bowling with off-spinner Washington Sundar (one for 18) and got a wicket off the second ball itself when John Campbell slapped straight to deep midwicket fielder Krunal Pandya.

The other opener, Evin Lewis, fell in the second over with pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar (two for 19) beating him with a knuckle ball to rattle his timber. Both the openers failed to open their account as the West Indies was reduced to eight for two.

Despite the two quick wickets, the West Indians continued to be aggressive in their approach and Saini exploited the situation by claiming two wickets off two balls in the fifth over.

Pooran, who was looking dangerous after hitting two sixes, went for another big shot but the ball ballooned up for wicketkeeper Rishab Pant to take an easy catch. Shimron Hetmyer (0) then dragged the next ball onto the stump for Saini’s second wicket.

Falling apart

The West Indies procession continued with Rovman Powell (4) falling to Khaleel Ahmed (one for eight) the next over and the side was reduced to 33 for five at the end of Powerplay.

Pollard and Brathwaite curbed their attacking instincts for a while and played some sensible cricket, adding 34.