India began their World Test Championship on a great note, as they recorded their biggest victory, in terms of runs, as they demolished the West Indies by 318 runs in the first Test.
Set a daunting 419 runs to win, the West Indies crumbled as Jasprit Bumrah tore them apart with his phenomenal figures of 5-7.
With his fourth five-wicket haul in Test Cricket, Bumrah becomes the first Indian bowler to take a five-wicket haul in South Africa, England, Australia and now the West Indies.
He also recorded the least expensive five-wicket haul in the history of Test Cricket, as an Indian bowler.
Bumrah’s strategy was simple – hit the stumps.
There was nothing fancy and no elaborate game plan. It was a simple, yet effective strategy, and one that paid dividends as he had four of West Indies’ batsmen – John Campbell, Darren Bravo, Shai Hope and Jason Holder all bowled.
Playing in only his 11th Test, and in his first overseas tours, Bumrah is quickly showing signs of adaptability and intelligence. He is not going to take long to become the World number 1 Test bowler.
I recently wrote an article on central.bet.co.za on the age of fast bowlers, where I wrote about Bumrah, KG Rabada and Pat Cummins, who is currently the number 1. Test bowler.
We are in for a special time as these bowlers will all be vying for the number 1 spot in the coming months.
It was a special victory for Indian captain, Virat Kohli, who with this win, became the Indian captain with the most away wins in their history, with 12, beating Sourav Ganguly’s record of 11.
Ajinkya Rahane had a good Test, scoring back-to-back fifty plus scores, and registering his tenth Test century. He had waited a long time for this century, as his ninth came in August 2017. He showed the patience and resolve needed in Test Cricket, as he came out to bat when India were in trouble in their first innings on 25-3, and Kohli was dismissed. He made a resolute 81.
We have seen some genuine and old school Test match batting from three separate Tests this past week, with Tom Latham for New Zealand, Ben Stokes for England and Rahane for India.
The West Indies, having started promisingly in the early stages of the Test, were blown away in their second innings, as they were bowled out for only 100. It was their lowest Test score against India.
A fighting fifty run partnership between Kemar Roach (38) & number 11, Miguel Cummins (19*) saved them from absolute embarrassment, as they came together with the Windies on 50-9.
They did at least make it to 100, something England haven’t done four times in the past 19 months.
The victory opened India’s WTC campaign with 60 points, and they lead the two-Test series 1-0.
The final Test will be played on Friday 30th August, at 4:30pm SA time.