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Final, Singapore, September 07, 1999, Coca-Cola Singapore Challenge
(38.2/50 ov) 149/6

No result


Rain gods to the rescue

The final between India and West Indies began on time, with no rain delay

Anand Vasu
Anand Vasu
The final between India and West Indies began on time, with no rain delay. Sachin Tendulkar won the toss and elected to bat first. India opted to go into the final with Ramesh opening the batting. This meant that Amay Khurasiya missed out. West Indies played the same team that played the match against Zimbabwe. The only change from their previous match against India was the return of Sherwin Campbell to the team in the place of Wavell Hinds.
Walsh and Dillon began erratically, mixing some high quality deliveries with wides and no balls. While Tendulkar did not come out all guns blazing like he did against Zimbabwe, he played a solid steady knock. Tendulkar defended firmly. Sadagopan Ramesh did not get his feet moving, but timed the ball impeccably. When the ball was on leg stump, Ramesh lost no time in guiding the ball to the on-side fence. Ramesh worked the ball magnificently through the on-side, both off his hips and off his toes.
Reon King came in to the attack at the end of the 6th over. King has had a very successful tournament so far and replaced Walsh after the veteran had bowled just three overs. Though Ramesh stroked the ball for a couple of well timed boundaries, King got sweet revenge at the end of the over. Ramesh's lack of footwork was his downfall once again. King put the ball in the slot out-side off-stump and Ramesh took the bait and drove the ball straight to Perry at short-cover. Perry diving full length took a very good reflex catch to dismiss the opener. Ramesh had made 15 off 23 balls.
Rahul Dravid came in at the fall of Ramesh's wicket. Dravid came in to bat off a lean patch. In the last few games, Dravid had hardly made any significant scores in the last four or five innings and was looking to get his eye in. After beginning watchfully Dravid found some form, pulling Dillon to the mid-wicket fence. At the end of 10 overs India were well placed at 50 for 1.
Dillon was erratic in the beginning of the 12th over. Dillon banged the ball in short and surprised Tendulkar with pace and bounce. Tendulkar quickly took evasive action and the ball was declared a no-ball. Dillon followed up his no ball with a wide and then bowled Tendulkar a cracker of a ball outside off-stump. Tendulkar was beaten all ends up. Tendulkar then smashed the ball through covers for four. Dillon lost his rhythm and presented Tendulkar with another free hit, bowling short and wide outside off-stump. Tendulkar's powerful square-cut raced to the point boundary.
Reon King had been the pick of the West Indian bowlers in the match up to that point and he continued to tie down Rahul Dravid. King generated good pace and extracted good carry to the wicketkeeper. King managed to keep Dravid totally quiet and bowled out a maiden over.
Lara, in a surprise move, brought on Jimmy Adams to bowl the 14th over. Adams looked very rusty in the previous game and went for 20 runs off his first over on that occasion. Adams did nothing to suggest that Lara's move was a good one. He bowled a leg-stump line in an attempt to tie down Tendulkar. When he did pitch it outside off-stump, Tendulkar dispatched the ball to the fence. Adams' first over cost him 9 runs.
King continued to bowl tidily and should have had Dravid's wicket. Dravid played a fine glance and only managed to slide the ball of the face to Ridley Jacobs. Unfortunately for the West Indies, Jacobs could not hold onto the catch.
Lara re-introduced Walsh into the attack in the 17th over. Though Walsh bowled a couple of no-balls, he tied Tendulkar down for the rest of the over. Walsh angled the ball in to Tendulkar and did not give him any width to free his arms and play his shots.
Lara's move to bowl Walsh in the middle of the innings very nearly paid off in the 21st over. Walsh tied Tendulkar down for the first 5 balls of the over. A frustrated Tendulkar looked to drive Walsh on the up and ended up patting the ball straight down the wicket. Walsh got his hand to the ball but could not hold onto the catch.
Adams then bowled a reasonably tidy over and kept up the pressure. Tendulkar was kept off the strike and looked increasingly frustrated.
Walsh finally had his man, when Tendulkar was caught behind, playing an airy shot at a perfectly pitched ball outside off-stump. The ball was perhaps too short and too close to Tendulkar's body for him to drive, and he ended up nicking the ball through to Jacobs. Tendukar had made 40 off 65 balls.
Reon King came back into the attack and struck off the very first ball of his new spell. Rahul Dravid drove uppishly at ball outside off-stump and Sherwin Campbell threw himself full-length to his left at short extra-cover and pulled off a spectacular catch. After getting his eye in, Dravid had departed. Dravid had made 29 off 58 balls.
Vinod Kambli joined Ganguly out in the middle and suddenly the Indian batting order did not look quite so strong. With only Robin Singh to follow, a score of anything over 220 looked far away. Kambli has not had a good knock in a long while and looked shaky. He lasted only 5 balls and just got off the mark before he fished outside off-stump and gave Jacobs a simple catch. Jacobs made no mistake and King pickup his third wicket.
Nikhil Chopra came in at the fall of Kambli's wicket. Robin Singh was the man scheduled to come in next. Chopra has had limited limited success with the bat and the move seemed to be designed to keep up the right hander - left hander combination. Chopra played neatly, well within himself. He did not try any expansive shots and was content to push the ball into the gaps in the outfield and pick up singles. At the end of 30 overs India were 121 for 4.
Chopra lacked the strokes to deal with Merv Dillon and patted a ball straight back to him. Dillon made no mistake and Chopra was gone for 9. Robin Singh came in at the fall of Chopra's wicket. The combination of Singh and Ganguly looked a complete mismatch. Robin Singh looked to convert singles into twos and pushed hard for sharp singles. Ganguly on the other hand is not the quickest runner between the wickets and this led to some stopping and starting.
The writing was clearly on the wall, and in the 39th over, Ganguly finally ran himself out. Playing the ball off his hips to Chanderpaul at short fine-leg Ganguly took off down the wicket. By the time he was half way down the wicket, Chanderpaul had fired in his return and Jacobs whipped the bails off. Ganguly had made 23 off 44 balls.
Just moments after Ganguly was run out the skies opened, the clouds burst and rain came pouring down. Rain came down very hard and the covers were on in a flash. At the end of 38.2 overs India were 149 for 6. The situation looked particularly bleak for India, with no recognised batsmen to bat alongside Robin Singh.
After several pitch and ground inspections it was decided that the conditions were unfit for play. The match will be replayed on Wednesday 8th September 1999.

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