GUWAHATI, India – A blistering 78-ball 106 runs from Shimron Hetmyer to help the WINDIES post a challenging 323-run total, was not enough to prevent India from winning the first One Day International in Guwahati by eight wickets.

The WINDIES had two ODI debutants in the playing eleven, Oshane Thomas and Chandrapaul Hemraj. Hemraj was up first as he opened the batting with Kieran Powell, after Virat Kohli won the toss and sent the WINDIES in to bat first. With his total on 9, Hemraj chucked on to his wicket and the WINDIES was down 1 early.

Powell continued on with new batsman Shai Hope. The pair batted sensibly during the powerplay overs, maximizing the singles and doubles they could get when boundaries were hard to come by. Powell brought up his ninth Test half-century before being caught in the deep for 51. Marlon Samuels playing in his 200th ODI lasted all of 2 deliveries when he was trapped LBW without scoring.

In came Shimron Hetmyer, together with Hope, they looked to rebuilding the WINDIES innings. They combined for a 28-run partnership and stopped the slide of quick wickets. However, Mohammed Shami got Hope to slash at a rising delivery which carried the edge behind for an easy catch by MS Dhoni. Hope dismissed for 32 and the WINDIES 114/4.

Hetmyer was joined by Rovman Powell and this young pair gave a showcase of the future of WINDIES cricket. Hetmyer was the aggressor of the pair, playing fearless shots off Yuzvendra Chahal and Mohammed Shami. Hetmyer was dealing in sixes and fours, though Powell was not to be outdone. But the most impressive form of their partnership was the speedy running between the wickets. This put pressure on the Indian fielders, causing several miss-fields and drop pedcatches. With a 74-run partnership and the score on 188, Powell got beaten between bat and pad from a quicker delivery from Ravindra Jadeja, to be bowled for 22.

Captain Jason Holder joined Hetmyer and the scoring rhythm continued. Hetmyer struck a lofty blow to bring up his third ODI century and his first against India. Saluting his dressing room and crowd, he was given a lusty cheer from the appreciative fans in the stadium who saw a remarkable innings from the young 21-yr old. Holder and Hetmyer partnered for 60 runs before Hetmyer going for one too many shots was caught for an innings top-score of 106 from 78 deliveries. Chahal trapped Ashley Nurse LBW for 2, then bowled Holder for 38.

Kemar Roach and Devendra Bishoo took the WINDIES to a defendable 323-run total with some lofty blows and quick singles. Roach finished not out on 26 while Bishoo was not out on 22. Chahal was the best bowler for India, taking 3-41 while, Shami and Jadeja had 2 wickets each.

Oshane Thomas got the dream start to his debut match when he got Shikhar Dhawan to chuck on to his stumps for 4 and India quickly down 10-1. Then came the match-winnings partnership that sealed the WINDIES defeat. Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma combined for a mammoth 246-run partnership, which saw Kohli reach his thirtieth Test century and Sharma his twentieth.

Kohli and Sharma used the pace and bad line and length from the WINDIES bowlers to score freely with fours and sixes, keeping them well ahead of the required run-rate. Between them, they scored 36-fours and 10-sixes. Bishoo eventually got Kohli stumped by Shai Hope for 140, but the damage was already done.

Ambati Rayudu joined Sharma and the pair saw India home to the 323 target, not before Sharma reached 150. India got to their target in 42.1 overs, Sharma not out 152 and Rayudu not out on 22. Bowling for the WINDIES Devendra Bishoo took 1-72 and Oshane Thomas 1-83.

Speaking after the match, Captain Jason Holder said “They’re two quality players and I think we erred on the side of boundaries more often than not. We went looking for wickets upfront because we felt that was the way to win the game. When batting, we had a par score, maybe 20-30 runs short but we were pleased with the total we got. It was good seeing Hetmyer put his hand up and getting the score he did. We came out to play fearless cricket and with a young side, we’ve only got so much to gain as each match goes by. It’s only a matter of learning as quickly as we can and get into their middle order quicker.”