India clinched the Cable & Wireless One-Day International Series here yesterday by convincingly beating West Indies in a match that will long be remembered for the chaos and confusion over the infamous Duckworth-Lewis calculations.
On the Queen's Park Oval ground where India have fond memories, they comfortably triumphed by 56 runs, but a stoppage for rain at the start of the hosts' innings triggered a delay in the announcement of a revised total.
At the beginning, West Indies knew they were going after 264 from 49 overs at an asking rate of 5.32.
After 1.5 overs, there was a 20-minute stoppage for rain, but when West Indies resumed they only knew they would be allocated 44 overs, but had no idea what the adjusted target was.
It would eventually come about 20 minutes later - 248 from 44 overs at 5.63 an over.
In the waiting period, match officials at times looked perplexed, promoting someone to ask if they were doing a mathematical calculation or university thesis.
By the time West Indies knew their adjusted requirements, they had already lost openers Chris Gayle and Wavell Hinds and only 12 runs were on the tins.
Gayle and Hinds might have been psychologically affected by what took place, but their early dismissals brought mounting pressure on West Indies, who at no stage ever appeared to be in with a genuine chance of winning, not even when Shivnarine Chanderpaul and Ridley Jacobs were desperately trying to revive the depressing position with lusty hitting.
Cheered on by a highly supportive 18 000-strong crowd, Chanderpaul and Jacobs lashed 71 in 9.1 overs, but in the end the 11 Indians on the field and about 200 more of them, who sprinted onto the playing area when the victory was completed, were the ones enjoying the celebrations.
"We were facing a tough task batting second. The Indians stuck well to their guns and deserved to win the game," West Indies captain Carl Hooper conceded.
"With the game being reduced, the team batting second is at a slight disadvantage. When the rain came, that put more pressure on us. We had to score and score immediately."
In spite of earlier speculation that the in-form Chanderpaul might have moved up the order, he was kept at his usual No. 6 and when he came out to replace Hooper, West Indies were at 76 for four in the 21st over.
The left-hander immediately raised the tempo but his 51 off 40 balls and Jacobs' 36 from 31 balls could do very little to bring the asking rate anywhere close to a run-a-ball. From over No. 19, it climbed to more than seven and never came back down.
Both Brian Lara and Ramnaresh Sarwan tried their best in adding 65 in 15.5 overs for the third wicket, but the Indians always kept things tight.
When Sarwan tried to free himself, he chopped Harbhajan Singh into his stumps, while Lara deposited a full-toss from Sachin Tendulkar into the clutches of mid-wicket.
In between, Hooper's attempted pull from his second ball resulted in a catch to mid-off. He was one of three wickets to Ajarkar, who returned to polish off the innings as he did at Kensington Oval four days ago.
The match will also be remembered for a run-out decision after India persuaded umpire Eddie Nicholls to consult the TV replay after Nicholls had ruled that Mervyn Dillon had made his ground. Nicholls had signalled leg-bye, but had to cancel the signal after confirmation came that Dillon was short of the mark.
Choosing to bat first for the second successive match, India scored at a decent clip for most of their innings, but were unable to launch an assault in the last ten overs in which they lost their last six wickets for 48.
Gayle and Mervyn Dillon, who completed the second five-wicket haul of his career, shared those wickets equally.
The hometown fast bowler removed dangerous openers Sourav Ganguly and Virender Sehwag in his opening spell and when Hooper summoned him at the death, he responded with the even more vital scalp of Sachin Tendulkar.
This was no vintage performance by Tendulkar, but he overcome a slow start to effectively compile 65 off 70 balls with three fours and a six off Hooper over long-on.
Four overs were still available when Tendulkar went, but the West Indies took care of the tail without much resistance, with Gayle admirably assisting Dillon.
India managed to maintain a decent scoring rate all the way through, with Ganguly and Dinesh Mongia putting on 62 for the second wicket. Both also gave catches to mid-wicket, the former pulling Dillon and the latter deceived by a slower ball from Corey Collymore.