The India vs West Indies rivalry is one of the most captivating contests in Test cricket.
India and West Indies first played Test cricket in 1948. Led by captain John Goddard, the West Indies cricket team first toured India for a five-match series in 1948-49. The hosts were captained by Lala Amarnath. West Indies clinched the five-match Test series 1-0.
In January 1953, the Vijay Hazare-led Indian cricket team travelled to the Caribbean for their first overseas Test series against West Indies. However, the hosts once again bagged the series with the same scoreline.
Since then, India and West Indies have faced each other in 98 Tests so far. West Indies have won 30 of those Tests, while India have secured 22 victories. As many as 46 matches have ended in draws.
While West Indies dominated this Test fixture till 1990s, India have not lost a Test match against West Indies since 2002.
Both the sides have registered numerous records during their enthralling battles and here we take a closer look at some of those India vs West Indies Test records and stats.
India vs West Indies Test records and stats
Highest team total
The Indian cricket team holds the record for the highest team total in India vs West Indies Tests. During the first Test of the West Indies tour of India in 2018, the hosts recorded a massive total of 649/9 in their first innings in Rajkot. Electing to bat first, India rode on hundreds from Prithvi Shaw (134), captain Virat Kohli (139) and Ravindra Jadeja (100 not out) to post a mammoth total on the board. India then bowled out West Indies for 181 and 196 to win the Rajkot Test by an innings and 272 runs.
Lowest team total
India owns the unwanted record for the lowest team total in this Test fixture. Opting to bat first during the first Test of West Indies’ tour of India in 1987, the hosts were bundled out for 75 in Delhi. Right-arm pacer Patrick Patterson was the wrecker-in-chief for West Indies as he picked up five wickets for just 24 runs. India later bounced back to bowl out the visitors for 127 in their first innings. The Dilip Vengsarkar-led India managed 327 in their second innings before West Indies chased down the required target with five wickets in hand.
Legendary batter Sunil Gavaskar has scored the most runs in India vs West Indies Tests. The former India opening batter amassed 2,749 runs in 27 matches at an average of 65.45. Gavaskar slammed 13 hundreds and seven fifties against West Indies in his illustrious Test career. His highest Test score of unbeaten 236 also came against the mighty West Indies. Meanwhile, Clive Lloyd is the highest run-scorer for West Indies, having scored 2,344 runs in 28 Tests at an average of 58.60 against India.
Ex-India captain Kapil Dev has picked up the most wickets in this Test fixture. The former right-arm pacer bagged 89 wickets in 25 matches at an average of 24.89 against West Indies between 1978 and 1989. Dev scalped five four-wicket hauls and four fifers against Windies in Test cricket. For West Indies, Malcolm Marshall is the leading wicket-taker in this fixture with 76 wickets in just 17 Tests at an average of 21.98.
Highest individual score
Former West Indies top-order batter Rohan Kanhai holds the record for the highest individual score in India vs West Indies Tests. Batting at number three, Kanhai scored 256 against India during the third Test of the West Indies tour of India at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata in 1958-59. Kanhai’s brilliant knock helped West Indies win the Kolkata Test by an innings and 336 runs.
Best bowling figures
Kapil Dev holds the record for the best bowling figures in an innings in India vs West Indies Tests. The former India captain finished with figures of 9/83 during the second innings of the third Test of West Indies’ tour of India in 1983. Despite Dev’s incredible spell, India lost the Test by 138 runs. Meanwhile, Narendra Hirwani holds the record for the best bowling figures in a match in this Test fixture. The India leg-spinner scalped 16 wickets in the Chennai Test during the West Indies tour of India in 1988. India won the fourth Test of the series by a massive 255 runs.
Sunil Gavaskar and Dilip Vengsarkar hold the record for the highest partnership in India vs West Indies Tests. The Indian duo stitched an unbeaten 344-run stand for the second wicket against West Indies in their second innings of the Kolkata Test at the Eden Gardens in 1978. It was the third match of a six-match series and the contest ended in an exciting draw as the Windies hung on to salvage a result with just one wicket to spare.
Photo credit: Alamy