Tarouba, Aug 2 (IANS) Inexperienced opener Ishan Kishan joined an elite group of just six players as India clinched the ODI series against the West Indies in style with a commanding 200-run victory over the Caribbean side in the third ODI, here.
Kishan scored his third consecutive half-century when compiling a quickfire 77 from just 64 deliveries against the West Indies and in the process joined a group of five other India men’s players to have reached 50 in all matches of a bilateral three-game ODI series, reports ICC.
There are some India greats among that group that Kishan entered, with Kris Srikkanth (1982), Dilip Vengsarkar (1985), Mohammad Azharuddin (1993), MS Dhoni (2019) and Shreyas Iyer (2020) the previous batters to have achieved the feat.
While Kishan has some way to go to match the exploits of the aforementioned quintet, the dynamic 25-year-old has made a blistering start to his international career over the last two years and is in the mix to earn selection for India at this year’s ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup.
Kishan has 617 runs from 17 ODIs since making his international 50-over debut against Sri Lanka in July 2021 and his record-breaking 210 against Bangladesh at the end of last year is the standout performance of his fledgling career to date.
But his efforts against the West Indies have shown the left-hander has more consistency to his game now and his imposing career strike rate in ODI cricket of 107.43 provides India’s top-order with yet another good attacking option.
While Kishan was troubled early by West Indies pacer Kyle Mayers in the third ODI of the series on Tuesday, he soon found his rhythm to find the boundary with ease alongside fellow opener Shubman Gill.
Kishan fell in the 20th over when stumped by West Indies captain Shai Hope, but not before he and Gill had put on 143 for the opening wicket and put India in a dominant position to clinch the series.
Gill (85), Sanju Samson (51) and stand-in skipper Hardik Pandya (70*) also compiled half centuries in the absence of rested stars Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli as India amassed a big total of 351/5 from their 50 overs and that was always going to be enough as the hosts fell well short in reply.
Kishan was deservedly named Player of the Series for his efforts that saw him compile 184 runs from the three matches at an average of 61.33.