Indians need to maintain their consistency

Indians need to maintain their consistency

Indians need to maintain their consistency

Admittedly, this West Indian side is a pale shadow of its imperious predecessors, but credit should be given to the Indians for trampling them in a show of character and skills. But this is the time they will have to maintain the intensity, and attempt a clean sweep that will go a long way in asserting the might of India’s second line players.

Rohit Sharma has been consistent with the bat, skipper Suresh Raina showed admirable temperament in leading his troops and Virat Kohli further underlined his maturity with a few good knocks and after a modest outing in the one-off T20, Parthiv Patel too seems to have found his range.

In the bowling department, few have been more imposing than Amit Mishra. The Haryana leg-spinner tied down the West Indian batsmen with his bag of tricks while inflicting telling blows on the opposition regularly. The host batsmen are yet to unravel the puzzle that Mishra is, playing him with a lot of tentativeness.

Raina admitted as much. “Mishy has been excellent for us in the series so far, and whenever I gave a chance to him, he responded well. The most impressive aspect is that he has shown excellent control over his bowling, while taking wickets at regular intervals. As a captain, I can’t ask more from a bowler,” Raina said.

During Monday’s fourth one-dayer here, India will have to give chance to players who have been warming the benches. None deserves a chance more than R Ashwin. The Chennai off-spinner has been in excellent form over the last year or so, but Mishra’s roaring form has kept him away from the side in this series so far.

Raina indicated that the think-tank will give a chance to all players in the remaining matches.

“We have guys like Ashwin, Ishant and Manoj Tiwary in the dressing room. We have to give chances to them in the two matches to come.”

 From the West Indian point of view, they only have the proverbial pride to play for. However, it’s important for them that they gave a good account of themselves in the last two matches ahead of the Test series. Players like Darren Sammy, Kemar Roach -- who looked a bit rusty on Saturday after a couple of weeks away from cricket -- Darren Bravo and Devendra Bishoo will have to play a big role in the longer version.

 There were moments when they indicated a stronger performance, but lack of consistency and fragile temperament thwarted their moves. They will perforce have to find a way to exploit the chances that come their way, otherwise the remaining part of the series too will be a one-horse race.