Wake up top order – Virender Sehwag

The stand in captain of India, Virender Sehwag was disappointed with the performance of the top order in the third One Day International which was lost by a narrow margin of 16 runs.

Virender Sehwag walks back to pavilion in 3rd ODI against West Indies
Virender Sehwag walks back to pavilion in 3rd ODI against West Indies

The third match of the series was played at Sardar Patel Stadium, Montera, Ahmedabad, on December 5, 2011.

India entered in the match with two victories in their pocket which were earned by clinching the first two ODIs. They were anticipating another win which could have cemented their series victory but West Indies bounced back in the series by the first victory of their tour.

The Caribbeans were down at one stage after losing their five top order batsmen for 181 runs in 44.2 overs. They suffered another blow when one of their most talented batsman Darren Bravo got retired hurt and could not continue his batting.

Andre Russell and Captain Darren Sammy changed the complexion of the game by their assault on the Indian bowling. They were very harsh on them and thrashed 23 runs in the 49th over followed by 20 in the last over. The duo contributed unbeaten 79 runs in 34 balls which included 4 sixes and 9 fours from both of them.

That quick fired partnership escalated the innings total to 260 runs at the end of the 50th over. Sehwag believed that the total could have been chased but couple of early wickets let them down and were unable to recover later. He said,

“The total was ok to chase but we lost couple of early wickets with me and Gautam (Gambhir) getting out back-to-back in the second over. And after that we did not have a good partnership in the top order. If we lose early wickets it is difficult to chase,”

The contribution of top five order batsmen in the third ODI was as follows,
– Parthiv Patel 39 runs
– Virender Sehwag 0
– Gautam Ghambir 0
– Virat Kohli 20 runs
– Suresh Raina 2 runs

Rohit Sharma gave stability to the Indian innings and shred few valuable partnerships with the lower order batsmen. The seventh wicket partnership with Ravichandran Ashwin contributed 91 runs and they were cruising to victory. Ashwin lost his wicket for 31 runs at a crucial moment and the biggest blow for India came when Sharma was run out at 95 runs when the ball hit directly by Sammy. India lost the hopes and the match as well and Sehwag appreciated the lower order batting while criticizing the top order as,
“We are top order batsmen and it is our job to play well and give a good start. We need to look back at our batting performances. We are playing good cricket since sometime, but today we were not able to play well. We hope to do well and not let down our fans.”

Sehwag anticipated that the top-order will come to the age in the remaining two ODIs which will enable them to win the series with a bigger margin.


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