West Indies beat India by seven wickets in their semifinal clash at Wankhede stadium in Mumbai on Thursday. West Indies won the toss and elected to bowl.
India got off to a breezy start, with Rohit Sharma piling on 43 runs in just 29 balls. Once Sharma and Ajinkya Rahane (a handy 40 off 68) got out, Mahendra Singh Dhoni promoted himself to the No 4 slot. Then he and Virat Kohli set about doing what they do best – sprinting between the wickets and exploding towards the end. Their 64-run partnership off 27 balls pushed India to an imposing 192/2, with Kohli once again playing a sublime 89 off 63. The West Indies bowling attack didn’t have much to write home about – the only two Indian wickets went to Andre Russel and Samuel Badree.
Jasprit Bumrah struck gold for India in his very first over, bowling Chris Gayle out with what the commentators hailed as India’s ball of the tournament. Another West Indies wicket (Marlon Samuels, 8 off 7) fell soon after, and the Indian fans cheered like it was only a matter of time. But Johnson Charles and Lendl Simmons had other ideas – almost effortlessly, they raced to a 97-run partnership, leaving the Indian bowling attack dispirited and the crowds silent.
A desperate Dhoni turned to Kohli, and sure enough, he took Charles’ wicket the very first ball he bowled. But what really cost India was getting Simmons’ wicket twice on two no-balls, one by Ravichandran Ashwin and another by Hardik Pandya. Simmons went on to score 83 off 51 and took his team home.
West Indies will play England in the final at Eden Gardens, Kolkata, on Sunday.