Former West Indies captain Jason Holder has urged his teammates to put up a fight against India. The visitors suffered a six-wicket defeat in the one-sided first ODI match at Narendra Modi Stadium, Ahmedabad on Sunday.
Windies arrived in India after a 3-2 T20 series win against top-ranked England. But Kieron Pollard & Co soon found themselves struggling in Ahmedabad.
Put into bat, they managed only 176 in 43.5 overs despite Holder's measured 57 off 71. The second-highest scorer was Fabian Allen, who scored 29 off 43, coming at 8th down.
“We just got to put a bigger prize on our wicket, too many soft dismissals in the innings today (on Sunday). The pitch was a little difficult to start off but more or less we still got to dig a little bit deeper, put (up) a much better fight," Holder said in the post-match briefing. "We got a couple of days off and come back stronger."
Except for opener Shai Hope, who made eight of 10 balls, and skipper Pollard (0 off 1) other top-order batters got the starts but none managed to convert. The two teams will play two more ODIs at the venue before moving to Kolkata, where they will play three T20Is. The second ODI is scheduled for Wednesday.
“We got to dig deeper. I don’t think we are too far off to be fair. Our top-order just needs to go a little deeper, put a heavier prize on their wicket, and just get themselves a really good chance,” added Holder, who made 57 and struck four sixes.
Holder and Allen stitched a 78-run stand to briefly stop the rot and help Windies post a fighting total. But as it turned out, a total of 176 proved too little against India. Holder, while hailing Allen's ability as a batter, highlighted the importance of partnerships.
“It was a clear-cut situation where we needed to dig deep and spend time. Fabian is a very capable batsman (batter), he is one of those guys who can strike really well, when he gets in," the 30-year-old added. “So, I just try and give him that confidence and we tried to build a good partnership, it is unfortunate when he got out, had he gone a little longer and we build a partnership little further, we could have been in a real good position to finish the innings off nicely."
For India, Yuzvendra Chahal (4/49) and Washington Sundar (3/30) did the damage before skipper Rohit hit a magnificent 60 off 51 balls. Debutant Deepak Hooda (26 off 32) was involved in an unbeaten 62-run fifth-wicket stand with Suryakumar Yadav (34 off 36).
This was India's 519th win in 1000 ODIs. India have lost 431 matches. There were nine tied and 41 no result matches.
Against the Windies, India have a slight edge in the ODI head-to-head record, 65-63 in 134 matches. There were two tied matches and four no results. In the last ten meetings, India have lost only once. The last time India lost an ODI against the Windies at home was on December 15, 2019 at Chidambaram Stadium, Chennai.