Records and bowling reputations tumbled in the first T20 match between India and West Indies at Florida. West Indies scored 245/6, powered by Evin Lewis (100) and Johnson Charles (79). KL Rahul (110 not out off 51 balls) may have well played the most decisive innings of his career, scoring his maiden T20 hundred off just 46 balls, had it not been for his captain MS Dhoni's last ball dismissal with 2 to score for a win and 1 for a tie.

Dwayne Bravo landed the decisive punch, dismissing the Dhoni (43 off 25 balls) with the last ball of the match. Earlier, it was Rohit Sharma (62 off 28 balls) who had set the tone at the top of the order.

The short boundaries and India's lack of genuine pace bowling was punished in a manner by the West Indies. Despite Chris Gayle's missing out, the world champions showed the sheer range of power hitters they have at their disposal. The striking was raw and clean, and the effects were devastating. It was one of those days when not a single Indian bowler could do anything to stem the flow of runs and impact proceedings.

In matches like these, it becomes a case of who can cart the ball a long way, and Charles and Lewis were in sublime form; at one stage, both of them were mistiming shots that went for sixes. In his very first over, Stuart Binny ran the risk of conceding more runs than Stuart Broad did against India and Yuvraj Singh in the 2007 World Cup. Binny was clobbered for five sixes by Lewis, and had bowled a wide as well. The Indian all-rounder got away with the West Indian opener mistiming a full-toss off the last ball.

India's spinners Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja were the team’s saving grace and made a good comeback later on in their spell. Charles had thumped Ashwin for two sixes while Lewis did the same to Jadeja. There was no structure to the six-hitting madness, and after the thrill-a-minute first innings partnership was broken thanks to a cracking Mohammad Shami yorker, India had to contend with more big hitters walking out to the park. Andre Russell and Kieron Pollard played quick cameos as West Indies brought up a humungous total.

India were well on course with Sharma blazing his way out of the blocks with a flurry of boundaries. But the wickets of Ajinkya Rahane, who had come in for Shikhar Dhawan, and importantly, of Virat Kohli left India with a mountain to climb. Kohli was taken by surprise by a delivery that landed slightly short, cramping the batsman, who couldn’t quite control his pull shot.

Sharma and Rahul did not clear the ropes with the ease of the West Indian batsmen, but kept the chase alive. The Indian opener sent Sunil Narine out of the attack, counter-attacking the off-spinner by hitting through the line. Sharma couldn’t connect an attempted big hit off Pollard, and holed out in the deep to Charles.

The courageous Rahul chose his big shots wisely. With Dhoni still settling in, it was the Karnataka batsman who got the boundaries to keep India in the hunt. It was not until the 17th over of the match that it looked like India could win.

Dhoni and Rahul scored a six each, and the equation came down to 33 needed off the last three overs. Bravo, after conceding a boundary to Dhoni off the first ball through a full-toss, did better, conceding only five from the rest of the over. With the pressure on the fielding side, Marlon Samuels dropped a dolly in the final over. But moments later, the veteran Windies player atoned for it by accepting Dhoni's catch.

Match records

India and West Indies scored a combined 489 runs in Florida which is a record for the highest match aggregate. West Indies' score of 245/6 was their highest Twenty20 International total and the third highest overall; India's 244/4 was their highest T20I score, the highest T20I total for a team batting second and the fourth highest overall.

West Indies' 21 sixes in their innings also created a new record for the most number of sixes in a T20I innings, easily displacing the 19 sixes hit by Netherlands when they scored 193/4 against Ireland in 2014. KL Rahul's 100 off just 46 balls for India put him joint-second along with Faf du Plessis in the list of fastest centurions in this format of the game. Evin Lews took 32 runs off a single Stuart Binny over during the West Indies innings, which is the second-highest number of runs scored in one over, after Yuvraj Singh's 36 runs off Stuart Broad in the 2007 World Twenty20.

Brief Scores

West Indies 245/6 in 20 overs (Evin Lewis 100, Johnson Charles 79; Ravindra Jadeja 2 for 39, Jasprit Bumrah 2 for 47) beat India 244/4 (KL Rahul 110 not out, Rohit Sharma 62; Dwayne Bravo 2 for 37, Kieron Pollard 1 for 30) by 1 run.