|Hero: Virender Sehwag has become the highest run scorer in the one-day game [AFP]|
Swashbuckling opener Virender Sehwag bludgeoned a world record 219 as India handed West Indies a 153-run drubbing to win their one-day international series.
Sehwag broke compatriot Sachin Tendulkar’s ODI mark of 200 not out against South Africa at Gwalior last year to help register a team score of 418-5 in 50 overs, India’s highest ever in one-dayers.
In reply, West Indies was all out for 265 in 49.2 overs, with a valiant run-a-ball 96 by Denesh Ramdin. Spinners Rahul Sharma and Ravindra Jadeja took three wickets apiece.
“I was cheering for Sachin when he got his double-hundred and it’s great to break his record”
India’s Virender Sehwag
Sehwag accumulated an astounding 142 runs from boundaries, smashing 25 fours and seven sixes in 149 balls to help seal the five-game series 3-1.
Sehwag’s 15th ODI century was his first as captain and beat his previous best of 175 against Bangladesh at the 2011 World Cup. The Delhi batsman enabled his team to better its previous best of 414-7 against Sri Lanka at Rajkot in 2009 and also register the joint-fourth highest ever in ODIs.
“I was cheering for Sachin when he got his double-hundred and it’s great to break his record,” Sehwag said.
“The last time I played 47 overs, I got 175. This time I got 200.”
The hard-hitting Sehwag reached hundred in only 69 balls with a four through point off pace bowler Kieron Pollard and broke world mark with a similar shot.
After a few singles in the 190s, Sehwag cracked another four through point, this time off Andre Russell, to move from 197 to 201 to beat Tendulkar’s record.
But unlike Tendulkar, who reached the 200-run mark in the last over of the innings, Sehwag got there in only the 44th over, triggering celebrations in the packed 30,000-capacity Holkar Cricket Stadium.
The 33-year-old Sehwag pumped his fist in joy and raised his hands as he was first hugged by batting partner Rohit Sharma and then congratulated by the West Indian players.
“I had told my opening partner Gautam Gambhir that if we can show some patience on this track we will be in for a big one,” Sehwag said.
“It was only after the batting powerplay started, I felt that I could reach a double-hundred.”
Sehwag showed his trademark aerial shots early on, hitting an “upper-cut” six over third man off pace bowler Kemar Roach and then welcoming Sunil Narine into the attack with a six over long-on from the offspinner’s first ball.
“Sehwag has destroyed bowlers all over the world”
West Indies’ Darren Sammy
He hammered Narine for another six over long-on later in the innings, while also hitting three sixes off Russell and one off captain Darren Sammy.
Sehwag, who captained India in the absence of regular skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni, survived a few run-out chances and was also dropped on 170 by Sammy off pace bowler Ravi Rampaul.
“When Sammy dropped me, I knew that God was with me,” said Sehwag, who was eventually out in the 47th over when he miscued a shot and was caught on the long-off boundary.
“Sehwag has destroyed bowlers all over the world,” Sammy said.
“We bowled some good balls but he played better shots.”
Highest run scorers in a one-day:
1. Virender Sehwag (India) 219 v West Indies Indore 2011
2. Sachin Tendulkar (India) 200* v South Africa Gwalior 2010
3. Charles Coventry (Zimbabwe) 194* v Bangladesh Bulawayo 2009
4. Saeed Anwar (Pakistan) 194 v India Chennai 1997
5. Viv Richards (West Indies) 189* v England Manchester 1984
6. Sanath Jayasuriya (Sri Lanka) 189 v India Sharjah 2000
7. Gary Kirsten (South Africa) 188* v UAE Rawalpindi 1996
8. Tendulkar 186* v New Zealand Hyderabad 1999
9. Shane Watson (Australia) 185* v Bangladesh Dhaka 2011
10. MS Dhoni (India) 183* v Sri Lanka Jaipur 2005