Providence (Guyana): Rain played spoilsport as the first One-Day International between India and the West Indies was called off after the home side scored 54 for one in 13 overs here.
The stop-start match, which was reduced to 34-over-a-side, was abandoned after a second rain interruption. After waiting for more than an hour and a half, the umpires were forced to call off the match on Thursday.
Opener Evin Lewis and Shai Hope were batting on 40 and 6 respectively when the match was called off after Indian captain Virat Kohli won the toss and asked the West Indies to bat.
The other opener Chris Gayle was out in the 11th over after scoring 4 off 31 deliveries in an agonisingly slow knock. He had come into the match 12 runs short of Brian Lara’s 10,405 ODI runs, the most by a West Indies batsman.
The match was already reduced to 43-over-a side contest even before a ball was bowled as wet outfield due to rains had forced the toss to be delayed. The match began two hours later from its scheduled start.
West Indies made a quiet start with Bhubaneswar Kumar and Mohammed Shami exploiting the conditions well to tie down Gayle and Lewis before the first rain interruption.
India did not take the DRS when Lewis looked plumbed in front of wicket in the fourth over off Shami’s bowling. Replays showed the ball would have gone on to hit the leg stump but India did not opt for a review. Lewis was on 1 then.
The home side had scored 9 for no loss in 5.4 overs at the first rain break. The match was about to be resumed 30 minutes later but wet area near the bowlers’ run-up led to another delay of more than half an hour.
The Indian fielders and the two West Indies batsmen — Gayle and Lewis — came out to the ground but Kohli was seen having a discussion with the umpires.
Play did not start immediately as the umpires reckoned the ground staff need more time to get it ready. Kohli and some other Indian players were seen shaking their legs for a while, moving to the tunes of the DJ at the venue.
The players later walked off the field and the ground staff were seen spraying a lot of sawdust on the wet areas.
The umpires made another inspection and after more than an hour’s interruption, the match resumed for a 34-over-a-side affair.
Gayle and Lewis picked up steam after the long interruption. Lewis hit Khaleel Ahmed for 15 runs with a six and two fours in the eighth over but the introduction of wrist-spinner Kuldeep Yadav put some brakes on West Indian batsmen.
Kuldeep gave India the breakthrough as he dismissed dangerman Gayle who dragged the ball onto his stumps. Hope came in two overs later, but rains also came back to force the players to the dressing room once again.
The second one-dayer will be played in Port of Spain on Sunday.
India had earlier won the T20 series 3-0.