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London: India on Tuesday stormed into the semi-final of the ICC Champions Trophy tournament with a resounding eight-wicket victory over West Indies, riding on Shikhar Dhawan`s second consecutive ODI century.
The Indians first restricted the Caribbeans to 233 for nine as Ravindra Jadeja (5/36) ripped through the middle-order as Dhawan yet again took centre stage with dazzling stroke play to give India its second win in as many matches in group B.
The 27-year-old Delhi boy, who made a spectacular Test debut against Australia with a knock of 187, had scored a match-winning 114 against South Africa in the tournament opener.
The stylish left-hander yet again sizzled at the Oval as his unbeaten knock of 102 helped the `Men In Blue` chase down a target with 65 balls to spare. Dhawan smashed 10 fours and a six in the process.
The three-figure mark was achieved with a slashed six off Dwayne Bravo over backward point and then played dot balls to allow his partner Dinesh Karthik (50 no) to complete his well-deserved half-century.
Dhawan is enjoying a golden period in international cricket as his three knocks since comeback into Indian team has been centuries (187, 114, 102 no).
Dhawan was the toast of the Indian batting. He lived life to the fullest after being dropped by Kieron Pollard and Roach on 23 and 42, respectively. While Pollard`s catch at point was a difficult one, Roach dropped a sitter at fine leg off Dwayne Bravo’s bowling.
Those blemishes asides, Dhawan carried on from where he had left at Cardiff.
Jadeja was the man-of-the-match last night after bagging five wickets. Only a late charge by Darren Sammy (56 not out off 35 balls) lifted the West Indians past the 200-mark.
Dwayne Bravo and Pollard fell to big strokes after putting on 23 off 28 balls. Bravo (25 off 40 balls) was caught at deep square leg, pulling a Yadav ball right into the hands of Jadeja. Pollard tried to muscle a fuller ball from Ishant but could not cross Bhuvneshwar at long on. Pollard managed 22 off 32 balls.
It got West Indies very close to the average first innings total at The Oval, 243.
And yesterday India made its entry into the semi-final of the ICC Champions Trophy tournament by winning the match against West Indies.
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