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World T20: Spirited West Indies stun India in semis

Lendl Simmons and Johnson Charles slam half-centuries each to help West Indies chase down required total

Policy Pulse
Publish Date: Mar 31 2016 11:15PM | Updated Date: Mar 31 2016 11:41PM

World T20: Spirited West Indies stun India in semis

 Photo: Cricinfo

Lendl Simmons smashed an unbeaten 83 and slammed Johnson Charles 52 runs to help West Indies chase down required total to stun Men in Blue by seven wickets in the second semi-final at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on Thursday, to enter the final of the World Twenty20 cricket tournament.
Asked to bat first, India posted a challenging total of 192/2 in 20 overs, with help of Virat Kohli's 89.
In reply, Windies side reached the target in 19.4 overs, thanks to Simmons' 51-ball 83 and Charles' 36-ball 52.
The Caribbean side will now face England, who earlier beat New Zealand in the first semis on Wednesday, in the final at the Eden Gardens on April 3.
Chasing a challenging target of 194, West Indies got off to a poor start losing opener Chris Gayle (5) in the second over. Young pacer Jasprit Bumrah cleaned the left-handed batsman to have West Indies at 6/1.
As his opening partner Johnson Charles and Marlon Samuels (8) were looking to build a partnership after the first wicket, Ashish Nehra struck in the third over to send Samuels back to the pavilion and leave the Windies tottering at 19/2.
Charles and Simmons used their experience to good effect and score at a good pace to bring up 50-run partnership for the third wicket in just 34 balls and help team post 84/2 in 10 overs.
But Charles, soon his third T20I half-century in just 30 balls was dismissed by none other than bowler Kohli. 
The 97-run partnership for the third wicket was at last broken which helped India make a comeback into the game.
Simmons, who was caught twice off two balls, eventually brought his fifty up in just 37 balls to keep Windies hope alive in the match.
From there on, Andre Russell (43 not out off 20 balls) and Simmons remained unbeaten to steer their team to a triumph.
Earlier after been asked to bat, openers Rohit Sharma (43) and Ajinkya Rahane (40) got India off to a good start scoring 55 runs without losing a wicket in the powerplay.
But as Rohit was cruising after striking three boundaries and three sixes, leg-spinner Samuel Badree brought the much-needed breakthrough, dismissing him leg before wicket to have India at 62/1 in 7.2 overs.
Kohli along with Rahane played patiently, keep the scoreboard ticking and help team reach 86/1 in 10 overs.
But as hosts were cruising to take on the Windies bowlers, Russell struck in the 16th over to dismiss Rahane and have India at 128/2.
Dhoni (15 not out) gave good support to Kohli as the duo piled on some useful runs with boundaries and sixes at regular intervals to bring up an unbroken 64-run partnership for the third wicket and helping the team set a competitive total for West Indies to chase.