Rohit Sharma smashes 95, but India lose third ODI

Rohit Sharma's valiant 95 went in vain as the West Indies defeated India by 16 runs in the third One-Day International here Monday and kept the series alive.

Chasing a target of 261 runs, India again fumbled at the top before Sharma guided the innings scoring his third fifty of the series. Wickets kept falling at the other end. Sharma was run out to a sharp pick and throw by West Indies captain Darren Sammy, and it looked it was all but over for India.

But Abhimanyu Mithun (23) and Umesh Yadav (11) raised visions of a victory with some scintillating hitting. The two added 28 runs for the last wicket before Mithun was dismissed lbw to Ravi Rampaul, who took four wickets. India folded up in 46.5 overs.

It was the first victory for the West Indies team on this tour. The series is now wide open with India leading 2-1 and two more matches to go.

India had a bad start again with Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir. Both fell to Rampaul in successive balls for a golden duck.

Parthiv Patel (39) and Virat Kohli (20) added 25 runs for the third wicket before debutant Sunil Narine (2/34) trapped Kohli lbw. 

Marlon Samuels bowled Parthiv and Rampaul dismissed Suresh Raina (2), caught behind. Ravindra Jadeja (11) did not stay for long and soon India were left reeling at 105/6.

Sharma, who got away with a life when Sammy dropped an easy catch at gully, together with Ravichandran Ashwin added 91 runs to stabilise the innings.

Sharma, who has been a revelation in the series, hit 10 well-timed fours and a six. He was out to direct throw from Sammy.

Earlier, the West Indies smashed 73 runs in the last five overs to post a competitive 260/5.

All-rounder Andre Russell and captain Darren Sammy took the Indian pacers to the cleaners in the death overs after Marlon Samuels scored a patient 58 at the top of the order.

Russell's 40 off 18 balls and Sammy's 41 off 17 turned things around for the visitors, who are looking for their maiden win of the tour.

Their brutal attack also exposed the inexperience of the likes of Umesh Yadav and Abhimanyu Mithun, who gave away 43 runs in the last 12 balls. 

Mithun, playing his first match of the series and in hunt to be Praveen Kumar's replacement on the Australia tour, conceded 47 runs in seven overs. His last over went for 23 with Sammy hitting him for consecutive sixes over long on and cover. Yadav leaked 75 runs from nine overs. 

The West Indies also got off to a bad start as they lost in-form opener Lendl Simmons (1) early on and found scoring tough for as long as the 40th over.

Pollard (29) once again got out after a promising start with Ravindra Jadeja taking a blinder in the deep off Vinay Kumar (2/39).

Darren Bravo (26) and Samuels had shared 55 runs for the third wicket before the stylish southpaw was forced to retire at the end of the 26th over.

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