PORT OF SPAIN, June 4 (IANS): A second-string Indian team started their Caribbean tour with a comfortable 16-run win over the West Indies in the one-off Twenty20 international at the Queen's Park Oval here Saturday.
Twenty20 debutant Subramaniam Badrinath scored a stroke-filled 43 to help India recover from 56 for four to a challenging 159 for six in 20 overs after they were put in by the West Indies skipper Darren Sammy, who wrecked the top-order with his four for 16. Badrinath was also adjudged as the Man of the Match.
West Indies couldn't get their act right while chasing on a damp wicket and only could get 143 for five in 20 overs. Darren Bravo made 41 and Christopher Barnwell remained unbeaten on 34.
Harbhajan Singh bagged two for 25 while Praveen Kumar, Munaf Patel and Ravichandran Ashwin got a wicket apiece.
Ashwin gave India the first break through in the fourth over, after he got opener Lendl Simmons (9) caught at slips by Virat Kohli in a controversial fashion. The ball popped off Parthiv's gloves and Kohli took it off the rebound at slip.
Replays not only showed that the ball struck Parthiv's helmet before Kohli, but also revealed that there was no inside edge and instead the ball struck Simmon's thigh. But umpires didn't refer the decision to the third umpire. Andre Fletcher (11) also departed in the next over after being castled by Munaf.
Bravo and Marlon Samuels, who is making a comeback after a two-year ban for match-fixing, raised West Indies' hope with their 66-run stand. But Harbhajan broke the partnership by getting Samuels caught behind after he struck a 29-ball 27.
Bravo and Sammy also perished in quick successions while Danza Hyatt (14) and Christopher Barnwell (34) made a late fight-back with a 50-run unbeaten stand for the sixth wicket but it came too late.
Earlier, Badrinath struck five fours from 37 deliveries to help India recover from 56 for four in the ninth over.
Badrinath and Rohit Sharma (26) put some life in the Indian innings with their 61-run stand. Badrinath made 43 off 47 balls and hit five fours.
Sharma, Yusuf Pathan (15 not out) and Harbhajan Singh (15 not out) made a late charge as India made 72 runs from the final five overs to get a challenging total on an under-prepared track.