Umesh, spinners deflate Windies as India completes clean sweep

Umesh Yadav’s maiden 10-wicket haul took India to a 2-0 series win with two days to spare.

In elite company: Umesh Yadav (centre) became the third Indian fast bowler to claim a 10-wicket haul in a home Test. Photo: AFP

This two-Test series was always a mismatch. Further strengthening the perception were the margins of victory in Rajkot and Hyderabad. K. L. Rahul (33*, 53b, 1x4, 1x6) and Prithvi Shaw (33*, 45b, 3x4) raced to the 72-run target as India romped home by 10 wickets to complete a 2-0 series win.

Umesh, with a haul of 10 for 133, was the chief architect of the win; it put him in the elite company of Kapil Dev and Javagal Srinath — the only other Indian pacers with a 10-wicket haul in a home Test.

Windies skipper Jason Holder (19, 30b, 2x4,1x6) and Sunil Ambris (38, 95b, 4x4) had staged a rearguard action to delay the inevitable. But when Holder was caught off Ravindra Jadeja (3 for 12), the end was nigh. Windies was bowled out for 127.

Collapse

India’s spinners hit their stride again and quickly scythed through Windies’ top order, which struggled to erase what seemed like a slender lead. R. Ashwin (2 for 24) had Kieran Powell caught in the slips off a length ball that turned away from him after pitching. Shai Hope (28, 42b, 4x4) and Shimron Hetmyer (17, 29b, 3x4) then steadied the ship by cobbling together a 39-run partnership for the third wicket; Kuldeep Yadav (1 for 45) ended the resistance by getting Hetmyer caught by Pujara at gully.

Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Umesh Yadav (4 for 45), who was on a hat-trick from the first innings, narrowly missed it in the second. He took three wickets off four deliveries, dismissing Kraigg Brathwaite off the second ball of his first over. The batsman inside-edged to wicketkeeper Rishabh Pant, who put in a dive to complete the catch.

Yadav later got rid of in-form Roston Chase with a fine in-dipper that crashed into the off-stump as the Windies succumbed to a familiar collapse.

Slender lead

Earlier, resuming its innings on the overnight score of 308 for four, India lost five wickets quickly against the new ball. A crucial stand of 28 runs for the last wicket between Ashwin (35, 83b, 4x4) and an injured Shardul Thakur (4,12b) saw India gain a slender lead of 56 runs.

Chin music: Jason Holder (left) got rid of Ajinkya Rahane with a short delivery, breaking the 152-run Indian partnership. Photo: AP

 

The day’s play began in blazing sunshine, the host taking the lead courtesy of a sublime extra cover drive from Ajinkya Rahane (80, 183b, 7x4) off Holder. Holder’s mood, however, brightened soon after as he ended a 152-run stand with a snorter that took off from short of a length, surprising Rahane, who got a thick outside edge to Hope at gully. He, then, accounted for Ravindra Jadeja, the centurion from the Rajkot Test, with an in-dipper that trapped the southpaw in front for a two-ball duck.

Pant misses ton

Rahane, though, wasn't the only one to miss out on a hundred. Pant (92, 134b, 11x4, 2x6), who had until then played some imperious flicks through mid-wicket, tried to punch a short, rapid delivery off Shannon Gabriel; he ended up hitting it towards cover-point where Shimron Hetmyer dived to his right to pluck the catch. This was the second time in as many innings in this series that Pant was dismissed on 92; in Rajkot, he was caught off Devendra Bishoo’s bowling.

Windies’ new-ball bowlers got the ball to deviate off the pitch, with Holder using his height to extract extra bounce from the wicket. He was rewarded for attacking the stumps when he cleaned up Kuldeep with a ball that straightened off the pitch, to clinch his fifth five-wicket haul in Tests.

He also became the first Windies pacer since Courtney Walsh (2000) to take four five-wicket hauls in a calendar year. It was all in vain, however, as Yadav and India’s spinners took centre-stage.