World T20: West Indies victorious in a thriller against India to reach the final

Lendl Simmons was the Caribbean hero as he helped West Indies to a second T20 final whilst pushing his luck against the hosts.

World T20: West Indies victorious in a thriller against India to reach the final
Simmons only arrived in India a few days ago but helped West Indies through (photo: Getty Images)

West Indies continued their excellent campaign with a tremendous seven wicket victory over India with a masterclass of powerful strokeplay, setting up a final against England on Sunday. 

Cool Kohli gives India the advantage 

India would have been counting their lucky stars after a nervy Super 10 stage that saw them just sneak through to the semi-finals. Afghanistan required only two runs from three balls to prevent the hosts from qualifying, but a lack of composure and experience helped India claim the two points. Yet the hosts seemed to have put their concerns behind them when they looked more like the India of old, as they set an excellent total of 192-2 for West Indies to chase down.

All four of India's top order batsman contributed, with Rohit Sharma and Ajinkya Rahane putting on 62 for the first partnership. Sharma was eventually trapped by Samuel Badree for 43, but the spinner would have been the only West Indies bowler to enjoy looking at his final figures as he went for just 26 off his four overs.

Andre Russell dismissed Rahane for 40 but the pair of MS Dhoni and in particular Virat Kohli continued to demolish the West Indies bowling attack. India hit 65 off their final five overs, as highest run scorer of the tournament Kohli smashed 89 off just 47 balls.

Ill-discipline, bad luck and sheer Caribbean class costs the hosts

193 looked to be a decent target for India to defend, but West Indies would have taken hope from England's record breaking run chase of 230 on the same pitch against South Africa earlier in the tournament. However, India were able to squeeze the pressure as Jasprit Bumrah delivered a boomerang of a delivery to dismiss dangerman Chris Gayle for just five. Marlon Samuels came to the crease but never looked comfortable, departing for just eight as Ashish Nehra tempted him into a mistimed stroke, leaving West Indies 19-2.

The situation looked to have got even worse for the chasers, as Lendl Simmons seemed to be dismissed for 18 by Ravi Ashwin, only for the third umpire to see a front foot no ball. That mistake by the spinner proved costly, as Simmons and Johnson Charles put on 93 to get West Indies right back into the game.

It was part-time bowler Kohli who eventually found the breakthrough, dismissing Charles for 52. India should have also dismissed Simmons just moments later, but Hardik Pandya had also stepped over the line. The explosive batter, who had come in for Andre Fletcher, then had another moment of luck as Kohli touched the boundary when catching him on 68.

As the Indian bowlers struggled with the dew in Mumbai, Simmons and Andre Russell hurtled towards the 193 target, eventually reaching it with two balls and seven wickets to spare. Simmons finished with 83 and Russell 43 as the pair put on 80 to see their side into Sunday's final.