Impressive efforts with the bat from Anthony Alleyne and Kyle Mayers helped the West Indies to a four-wicket win against India at the ICC U19 Cricket World Cup on Sunday.
In perfect conditions for cricket at Tony Ireland Stadium in Townsville, the winners bowled well, restricting India to 166 for eight from its 50 overs.
And although they started poorly – West Indies was 13-2 in the ninth over – Alleyne and Mayers stepped up when required to help its side to victory.
Knowing it had a small total to defend, India needed to make a bright start and it not only took wickets but also bowled tight.
Sandeep Sharma (2-27 off 10 overs) led the Indian response and his ability to swing the ball caused problems for West Indies openers Kraigg Brathwaite and Sunil Ambris, who both made just four runs before being dismissed.
Sharma was equally adept at swinging into the right-handers as he was moving it away from left-handed pair John Campbell (36) and Alleyne.
He bowled a series of unplayable deliveries and had Ambris caught at first clip before he shattered Brathwaite's stumps with a ball that nipped back off the seam.
Campbell and Alleyne got together though and formed a solid, if slow, 58-run partnership that lasted exactly 17 overs.
It was the introduction of left-arm spinner Harmeet Singh (3-35 off 10) who made things happen for India.
After conceding 10 runs in his first over, he delivered his next six for the same amount, including the scalps of both Campbell – who offered back a soft caught and bowled chance that was duly taken – and Kavem Hodge, who was stumped for just one.
At 75 for four in the 28th over, the match was well and truly up for grabs but Alleyne and Mayers quickly got to work and their 58-run partnership – which came from just 76 deliveries – steered them towards the win on a track that proved difficult to bat on.
Alleyne's composed innings came from 91 deliveries, including just two fours and one six, while Mayers was more aggressive in his 54-ball stay at the crease.
Vikas Mishra (1-39 off 10) removed Alleyne and Harmeet chipped in again, removing Mayers caught behind.
But it was too little too late as Akeal Hosein (11 not out) and Justin Greaves (five not out) carried the victors over the line.
Earlier, India made a slow start in the face of terrific spells from West Indies openers Ronsford Beaton (3-33 off 10) and Jerome Jones (2-23 off 10).
Prashant Chopra (one), Baba Aparajith (five) and Hanuma Vihari (five) all failed and when captain Unmukt Chand's 61-ball innings of 22 came to an end, India were on the ropes at 50 for four.
Smit Patel (51) and Vijay Zol (26) were patient in their approach and rewarded with runs but it was tough going against a miserly West Indian attack.
In addition to his impressive effort with the bat, Mayers (2-35 off 10) was handy while despite going wicket-less, Greaves (0-35 off nine) and Derone Davis (0-26 off seven) helped restrict the flow of runs.
India's total always looked short and despite the fact it bowled well, it simply did not have enough runs on the board as the West Indies triumphed with 17 balls to spare.