Sarwan keeps his cool to see W.I. to thrilling win
By Kamil Zaheer
Guyana Chronicle
November 7, 2002

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JAMSHEDPUR, India, (Reuters) - Ramnaresh Sarwan kept his cool to claim victory for the West Indies against India in the first one-day international yesterday despite a late halt in play due to crowd trouble.

The 22-year-old batsman hit a last-ball four to lift West Indies to a four-wicket win after the players had been forced off the field with three overs remaining.

When they returned the West Indies lost two quick wickets and needed three from the last ball. Sarwan then hit medium pacer Ajit Agarkar past extra cover to seal victory and finish on a career-best 83 not out to be named the man-of-the-match.

West Indies reached 284 for six in reply to India's 283 for six.

``I was always thinking positive,'' said Sarwan who blames his loss of concentration for not converting good starts into big knocks in the past.

This time he displayed plenty of that commodity as he shared in an 87-run third wicket partnership with opener Wavell Hinds, who top-scored with 93.

With the crowd throwing empty water bottles on to the pitch, match referee Mike Proctor took the sides to the safety of the dressing room until the situation was brought under control.

The break seemed to help India as Shivnarine Chanderpaul (23) and then Ridley Jacobs (0) both fell in quick succession.

Sarwan said: ``I could see everyone standing on the dressing room balcony and that motivated me.'' After hitting the last ball to the boundary he threw his arms into the air in jubilation.

``I was looking for a yorker. I thought the best chance would be to hit straight or through extra cover,'' he added.

West Indies skipper Carl Hooper congratulated his batsmen for chasing India's stiff total.

``They were brilliant,'' he said. ``It was good to see that the batsmen held their nerve.''

Hooper said his team was not worried by the stiff target because matches in India were often high-scoring affairs.

``We have seen in India that huge scores are posted. 284 was gettable,'' he said. ``But we need to bowl and field better.''

He was disappointed by the crowd trouble, however. ``I have experienced it before in India, but I am a bit disappointed to see it again in 2002,'' he said.

Match referee Proctor said he would report the incidents to the International Cricket Council (ICC), but he praised both teams for the way they handled the situation.

``It is a little bit disturbing. It was scary with bombs (fire crackers) going off, but both teams were very sporting.''

Disappointed Indian skipper Sourav Ganguly blamed his bowlers for the defeat.

``We fought pretty well, we were in a position to win today, but the bowlers didn't do well,'' he said.

Leading duo of off-spinner Harbhajan Singh and leg-spinner Anil Kumble struggled on a flat pitch. Harbhajan went for 68 in nine wicket-less overs while Kumble returned 1-48 in seven overs.

V.Sehwag c & b Drakes 28

S.Ganguly b Collins 16

A.Agarkar c Gayle b Collins 95

V.Laxman b Nagamootoo 47

R.Dravid not out 46

Y.Singh c Gayle b Hooper 4

J.Yadav b Dillon 0

M.Kaif not out 31

Extras: (b-4, lb-6, w-5, nb-1) 16

Total: (for six wickets, 50 overs) 283

Fall of wickets: 1-43, 2-49, 3-147, 4-222, 5-235, 6-236.

Bowling: Dillon 10-0-64-1 (w-2), Collins 10-1-40-2, Drakes 10-1-62-1 (w-1), Hooper 10-2-46-1 (w-2), Nagamootoo 8-1-45-1 (nb-1), Gayle 2-0-16-0.

W.Hinds c Dravid b Nehra 93

C.Gayle c Yadav b Agarkar 7

M.Samuels b Kumble 51

R.Sarwan not out 83

C.Hooper c Yadav b Sehwag 4

S.Chanderpaul c Ganguly b Nehra 23

R.Jacobs run-out 0

M.Nagamootoo not out 1

Extras: (b-2, lb-5, w-16) 23

Total: (six wickets, 50 overs) 285

Fall of wickets: 1-28, 2-114, 3-201, 4-206, 5-277, 6-279.

Bowling: Nehra 9-1-50-2 (w-2), Agarkar 9-1-42-1 (w-8), Yadav 4-0-22-0, Harbhajan Singh 9-0-68-0 (w-6), Kumble 7-0-48-1, Sehwag 10-0-37-1, Yuvraj Singh 2-0-11-0.

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