West Indies need Marlon Samuels to extend ODI dominance versus India
Marlon Samuels has stacked up 903 runs in 23 ODIs on Indian soil. @AFP

Do you know who has scored the most runs for West Indies versus India in ODIs played in India?

That would be Marlon Samuels, who in five tours dating back to 2002 has stacked up 903 runs in 23 ODIs on Indian soil, at an average of 45.15 and with a strike-rate of 86.74. He has three hundreds and six fifties.

Next best for West Indies is former captain Carl Hooper, who in 22 ODI innings in India made 806 runs at 53.73, followed by Shivnarine Chanderpaul with 578 from 16 at an average of 41.28. The man with the same number of ODI hundreds in India, Chris Gayle, scored 552 runs at 42.46 from 13 innings. The other West Indians to cross 500 ODI runs in India are Phil Simmons (539 from 16 innings) and Ramnaresh Sarwan (528 from nine).

For all visiting teams, just three batsmen have been more successful than Samuels against India: Ricky Ponting made 1091 runs in 25 ODI innings at an average of 47.43 with three centuries, Kevin Pietersen stacked up 929 in 21 and Tillakaratne Dilshan 909 from 21.

Marlon Samuels and Carl Hooper are West Indies' most successful batsmen versus India in India.
Marlon Samuels and Carl Hooper are West Indies’ most successful batsmen versus India in India. (AFP image)

On his first tour of India in 2002, Samuels began with 51 and 52 before his form tapered off with returns of 16, 5, 1 and 3. In the must-win seventh ODI at Vijaywada, he roared back with an unbeaten 108 off 75 balls to set up West Indies’ 135-run victory to clinch the series 4-3.

During the four ODIs in early 2007, Samuels made 40, 1, 98 and 55 in a 3-1 win for India. The 2011 tour was a lukewarm one with 111 runs from five games as West Indies were beaten 4-1. Two years later, Samuel made 24, 8 and 71 in another loss. During the last trip in 2014, Samuels made two centuries in three matches at a strike-rate of 97.69 as India won 2-1 before the tour was cancelled following West Indies’ pull out over a pay dispute.

Of the current West Indies ODI squad, Samuels is by far the most experienced player with 199 ODIs. Next best is the skipper Jason Holder with 80 caps.

The first ODI against India in Guwahati on October 21 will be Samuels’ 200th. The team, ranked ninth in ODIs, could do with an encore from the 37-year-old as it bids to stop a mighty Indian team from adding another bilateral series win to their name.