Tamil Diplomat

Dhoni, bowlers extend World Cup streak

india sealed their progress to the Cricket World Cup quarter-finals as they recorded a nervy four-wicket win over West Indies.The defending champions looked set for a comfortable victory in Pool B when they reduced West Indies to 85-7.But captain Jason Holder made a brilliant 57 at number nine to stretch the total to 182, before India faltered to 107-5 in reply.It was left to skipper MS Dhoni to see India home with a composed unbeaten 45

Despite the modest target, India were in trouble with Jerome Taylor (2-33) and Kemar Roach (1-44) dismantling the top order.But just as he did in the 2011 World Cup final, and in countless other one-day internationals, captain Dhoni guided India to victory under substantial pressure.As well as guaranteeing their qualification for the knockout stages, India are now in pole position to finish top of Pool B, having won all their matches and with only fixtures against Ireland and Zimbabwe remaining.West Indies meanwhile are far from certain to advance from the group, having won just two of their five matches.Their fate will depend on the results of the remaining matches involving Ireland and Pakistan, and may come down to net run rate.

But despite the two sides’ contrasting fortunes, India’s victory was far from straightforward as they allowed West Indies to turn a one-sided contest into a scrap.West Indies won the toss and chose to bat, having scored more than 300 in every previous match in this tournament in which they had batted first.But that total was never on the cards after a shambolic performance from the top order.