Toronto, Sept 15: Rahul Dravid cracked 77 and held four brilliant catches as India defeated West Indies by 88 runs to win the Toronto Cricket Festival series of the three One-day Internationals 2-1 here on Tuesday.
The Indians, who scored an eight-wicket victory in the series opener on Saturday, played with great determination in the final game yesterday to beat Brian Lara's side comprehensively.
Put in to bat first, the Indians managed to reach 225, the highest total of the series, for the loss of seven wickets in 50 overs. In reply, the West Indians crashed to 137, all out, in 34.2 overs despite a stroke-filled knock of 76 by Ricardo Powell.
The 20-year-old rising star from Jamaica came to the crease when the West Indies had lost seven wickets with only 52 runs on the board.
West Indians made a disastrous start when their openers were dismissed before they could get off the mark. Sherwin Campbell, who had scored half century in each of the two previous games, was bowled by Debashish Mohanty with his very first ball. From the other end, Ventkatesh Prasad had the other opener Ridley Jacobs caught by Dravid for naught.
When the score slowly moved on to 20, Mohanty struck again. This time he had Christopher Gayle caught by skipper Saurav Ganguly for 7.
In the next over Prasad sent Indian supporters jubilant when he got the vital wicket of Shivnarine Chanderpaul, caught in the slips by Dravid, for 12.
The rest of the job was done by off-spinner Nikhil Chopra, who finished the day with his career best figures of five for 21 in 6.2 overs. He started the mopping up operation with the wicket of most prolific scorer Brian Lara who offered an easy catch to agile Dravid for 26.
Chopra also got the wicket of Powell who had raised West Indies hopes of victory with his belligerent knock which included seven towering sixes and three boundaries.
With his desperate attempt of keeping the strike, the powerful Powell accelerated the run rate with his forceful shots before falling to a diving catch by Robin Singh.
During his stay at the crease for 87 minutes, Powell produced 84 runs for the unique eighth-wicket partnership with tail-ender Corey Collymore whose contribution was only two runs. Overall Collymore scored three runs during his 81-minute innings before being trapped leg before off Chopra.
Earlier, Dravid, the star of the day, shared two good partnerships during his useful 112-minute innings. First he and Jacob Martin produced 59 runs for the fifth-wicket partnership. His sixth-wicket partnership with Vinod Kambli produced 77 runs.
Martin contributed 33 before falling to West Indies best pace bowler Courtney Walsh for 33 while Kambli was caught by Ridley Jacobs off Mervyin Dillon for 26.
Dravid, who was declared the Man-of-the-Match, hit two soaring sixes and six boundaries in his flowering innings of 77 before being bowled by Dillion who picked up five wickets for 51.
After having lost the series, West Indians are now hoping to beat Pakistan in the next three-match series starting on Thursday.
"We did not do well in the first and the last match and lost the series. We are now looking forward to winning against Pakistan," said Lara during his post match press conference.