Rohit Sharma’s belligerent 159 coupled with a gutsy 102 from KL Rahul powered India to a mammoth 387/5 in the second one-day international against West Indies at Visakhapatnam on Wednesday.
Put into bat, India, in a must-win situation after losing the three-match series opener in Chennai by eight wickets, did not let the pressure get the better of them. Both the Indian openers soaked up the occasion and took the attack at the opposition.
Rohit, who took time to find his groove, was the first to reach the three-figure mark with a stylish boundary to register his 28th ODI century in 107 balls. Rahul, who has been dominating talks in cricket circles, had his share of the spotlight registering his third ODI ton.
At one time, West Indies were clueless on how to bring at end to what was a dangerous looking partnership. However, Alzarri Joseph found some luck when he drew Rahul to slice one away which found Roston Chase at third man. Rahul department to a huge roar from the partisan Vizag crowd – his 104-ball 102 decorated with three sixes and eight boundaries.
Two balls later, the Vizag crowd was silenced when Virat Kohli was dismissed for a rare duck by his opposite number Kieron Pollard. Kohli was flummoxed by a beautifully disguised slower bouncer. He stretched out to reach for it, but ended up ballooning it to Chase, who was this time stationed at mid-wicket.
Rohit continued his flurry of boundaries and notched up 150, but departed soon after reaching the milestone – 159 – by Sheldon Cottrell, who had Rohit caught behind by Shai Hope. Rohit tonked 17 boundaries and five sixes in his 138-ball 159.
A thunderous 32-ball 53 from Shreyas Iyer and 16-ball 39 from Rishabh Pant, who seems to have found his mojo back, ensured the momentum does not slip away from the hosts, who finished at a massive 387/5.
For West Indies, Cottrell was the pick of the bowlers with 2/83 in 9 overs.
Brief scores: India 387/5 in 50 overs (Rohit Sharma 159, KL Rahul 102; Sheldon Cottrell 2/83) versus West Indies