Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni has defended the decision to call a halt to a seemingly achievable run chase in the third Test against the West Indies, saying going for the target could have resulted in his side losing the game.
Chasing 180 for victory, after dismissing the hosts for 322 in the afternoon session, India were on 94 for three before the start of the statutory final 15 overs when Dhoni decided to end the run-chase. Only 86 runs were needed off the 90 balls remaining when the captains shook hands as India settled for a draw in the third and final test at Windsor Park in Dominica.
India thus won the three-Test series 1-0, following a 63-run victory inside four days in Jamaica and a draw in the second Test at Barbados.
"Not disappointed about stopping the run-chase. We were risking a series win going after the target. We realised that it was not worth going for it after those wickets. We gave it a go but we are happy with the series win," Dhoni said after the match at the Windsor Park on Sunday.
"We did well in this game. West Indies batted well actually; we are not disappointed in any way," he said.
West Indies skipper Darren Sammy said he was a bit surprised that India opted not to press for a win.
"I was a bit surprised that India ended their run-chase but we will take it. We are very happy with the draw," he said.
Talking about the pitch and India's team composition, Dhoni said, "We were not sure about the wicket. If we go with a 2-2 combination and the track turns out to be flat, that can be a problem. We knew we had bowlers who could spin the ball if it started taking turn, like Raina.
"Harbhajan was getting a bit of spin and bounce and he got valuable wickets, not much help for the fast bowlers; they did well," he said.
Dhoni said the series was a good exposure for youngsters and he felt good to see Ishant Sharma take responsibility.
Ishant, Man-of-the-Series for his 22 wickets, said, "This is my first series where I took the highest wickets. It's kind of an Indian track, slow and flat, but you have to put in the effort as these things are beyond your control. I am pretty confident about myself, looking forward to England."
Man-of-the-Match Shivnarine Chanderpaul said, "The whole series I was getting out in 20s and 30s, very happy to carry on past the three-figure mark. It's at the back of my mind it has been happening for a while now.
"It's always an honour (becoming the most capped Test cricketer for Windies), just shows what hard work can do for you," said Chanderpaul, who scored unbeaten 116 in West Indies' second innings to deny India a victory.