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India complete series sweep

Ojha finishes with ten-wicket haul as hosts post massive victory
Last Updated : 16 November 2013, 21:00 IST
Last Updated : 16 November 2013, 21:00 IST

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India accorded perfect farewell to Sachin Tendulkar, wrapping up the series against the West Indies 2-0 with a crushing innings and 126-win at the Wankhede Stadium on Saturday.

West Indies started the third day on 43 for three, and 270 runs behind, and it was clear that they needed a miraculous effort to even make India bat again in the match.

There was not even a semblance of fight as they crumbled for 187 against Pragyan Ojha and R Ashwin to slip to a heavy defeat. In the process, Ojha, who took his second five-wicket haul of the match, completed a highly creditable 10-wicket haul and Ashwin swelled his match tally to seven wickets.

The task of prolonging the resistance of West Indies was on Chris Gayle and Marlon Samuels, and they seemed to make headway in that direction when the Windies duo milked Ashwin for 17 runs in the off-spinner’s sixth over, 15th of the innings. Gayle smashed the Tamil Nadu man for three fours and then Samuels added one more to the tally in that over.  But that remained the lone moment of sparkle in the West Indian innings, a minute attempt to stand up against the rampaging Indian spinners. Ojha jettisoned Samuels soon to end the 31-run alliance, as skipper MS Dhoni effected an easy stumping after the Jamaican made complete hash of a charge against the left-arm spinner.

Gayle soon departed, a thick outside edge of Ojha ended in the big gloves of Dhoni behind the stumps. Narsingh Deonarine, who was drafted into the playing eleven to strengthen the batting, couldn’t even open his account, and was out giving a tame return-catch to Ojha. At 89 for six, it was a just a matter of time before the West Indian innings folded. However, they managed to delay India’s victory celebrations for a little more time, as Shivnarine Chanderpaul and Dinesh Ramdin stitched together a 61-run stand for the seventh wicket.

They were not exactly comfortable in the middle, finding themselves in trouble against the extra bounce of Indian spinners. Still they tried to hang in there as much as possible, playing for the time. But that was a tough task on a pitch like this, and finally Chanderpaul succumbed to the mounting pressure. Ashwin trapped the Guyana left-hander plumb in front, and that moment onwards it was just a matter of time.

The Wankehede crowd, who cheered Tendulkar’s every movement from the beginning of this Test, got another chance to show their affection to the Little Master. Dhoni throw the ball to him, and the sight of Tendulkar removing his floppy hat sent the Mumbai crowd into delirium. He bowled two overs, but that was enough for the spectators to turn the atmosphere even more electric.

Then it was time for the coup de grace, and Dhoni summoned Mohammmad Shami and he answered his skipper’s call, knocking Shannon Gabriel’s middle stump off with a quick in-swinger. Shami ran towards Tendulkar with outstretched arms with his other teammates not too far away.

India won the series, and Tendulkar walked away with a contented smile.

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Published 16 November 2013, 21:00 IST

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