Debutant Navdeep Saini made a stright impression on his maiden T20I, with the figures of 3/17 as the Men in Blue defeated the West Indies by four wickets in the opening T20I of the three match series in Florida on Saturday.
Navdeep Saini helped team India restrict the Windies to 95 for nine in stipulated 20 overs. India also had their ups and downs while chasing the score, but eventually managed to get there with 16 balls to spare. However, regardless of the underwhelming display with the bat, the Indian skipper was quite content, praising Navdeep Saini as ‘a rarety with his raw pace’.
Navdeep Saini has already enjoyed success with the India ‘A’ previously on tour of the West Indies, the pacer attained a maiden in the final over of the match but it was his earlier double strike which gave him a dream start to his career.
Strike bowlers Washington Sundar and Bhuvneshwar Kumar had already put the Windies on the back foot by dismissing John Campbell and Elven Lewis early in the game and Navdeep Saini added to the West Indies’ misery by taking the wickets of Nicholas Pooran and Shimron Hetmyer of stright two deliveries.
"Navdeep is a rarity with his raw pace," said Kohli in appreciation of his debutant's impressive effort.
"We can only hope he kicks on from there. It wasn't the best pitch because of all the weather around. Everyone did a great job to get the match underway on time."
The pitch where all batsmen were having a tough time playing their shots, the Caribbean side were restricted to 95 for nine batting first. Indian batting line up also found the conditions equally tough but eventually managed to reach the target with 16 balls to spare.
Team India will be looking to clinch the series with a victory in the secont game at the same venue today before the teams head to Guyana for the final guame on Tuesday.