West Indies will face England in the final of the World T20 tournament after beating India by seven wickets in their semi-final on Thursday in Mumbai.
Man of the Match Lendl Simmons, who wasn’t part of the initial World Cup squad, smashed an unbeaten 83 off 51 balls to guide the West Indies home in a fantastic run-chase.
Simmons, who replaced the injured Andre Fletcher for this game, shared a 80-run partnership with Andre Russell (43 not out off 20) which took them to their target of 193 with two balls remaining.
Before that, Simmons was involved in a 97-run partnership with Johnson Charles (52 off 36) which laid the foundation for a impressive chase.
Needing 20 runs from the last two overs, Russell hit a six and four from the last two balls of the 19th over, bowled by Ravindra Jadeja, to ease the pressure for the last over.
Needing eight from six, MS Dhoni asked Virat Kohli to bowl the final over. Only one run came off the first two deliveries before Russell smacked a four and a massive six off a full toss to launch his team into the final.
West Indies captain Darren Sammy said after the game he felt India were 10 runs short and in the end it proved correct.
They lost Chris Gayle in the second over of the innings for five, but the rest of the batsmen stepped up superbly and never allowed the asking rate to get out of control.
India will look back at the missed opportunity to dismiss Simmons when he was caught on 18, but replays showed Ravi Ashwin overstepped which gave Simmons a lifeline which ultimately had a massive impact on the game.
Virat Kohli, so spectacular against Australia in their must-win group game, was superb again here, scoring an unbeaten 89 off 47 balls and a third consecutive 50-run partnership to take them to 192-2.
But seeing that this was the Wankhede stadium in Mumbai, where South Africa twice managed scores of 200-plus and failed to defend 229, there was always that feeling that they were at least 10 runs short of a good total.
Earlier on Thursday West Indies women beat New Zealand women by six runs to progress to the women’s final on Sunday, when they will face Australia.