India managed to beat Pakistan again in a World Cup match when they came out in front by six wickets at Eden Gardens under the lights tonight.
A Virat Kohli masterclass took his side home. He remained unbeaten on 55 from 37 balls. Seven fours and a huge six came from his blade.
|India v Pakistan|
|India: 119/4 (15.5/18 over, target 119)|
Pakistan: 118/5 (18/18 over)
The 61-run stand for the fourth wicket between Kohli and Yuvraj knocked the wind out of Pakistan’s chase.
For Pakistan, skipper Afridi had a poor game both as a leader and as a player. He failed to put pressure on India with spin when the ball was turning a mile at Kolkata.
Sami was the highest wicket-taker for Pakistan with two wickets for 17 in two overs. Amir and Wahab took a wicket each. Overall Pakistan bowlers gave away too many loose deliveries, and allowed the Indian batters to reach their target without taking too many risks.
Pakistan’s Mohammad Sami rocked India in the fifth over of their chase. His two-wicket burst brought back his team into the contest.
Dhawan scored six runs before he played on Sami’s delivery. The ball was short of a length on middle and off, Dhawan stayed in his crease and tried to steer to third man, but edged the ball onto the stumps.
Sami gave Pakistan the important breakthrough when Suresh Raina was bowled for a golden duck. Raina closed the face of his bat and the ball cannoned off the inside edge and uprooted leg stump.
Mohammad Amir gave Pakistan their first breakthrough when Rohit Sharma was dismissed in the third over with 14 runs on the board.
Rohit tried to loft down the ground but the ball gripped the pitch and was not full enough, he ended up lofting it really high in the air towards the off side. India opener fell for 10.
Earlier, useful knocks from Umar Akmal and Shoaib Malik pushed Pakistan to 118 in 18 overs against India on a viciously turning pitch at Eden Gardens, Kolkata under the lights.
Nehra returned in the 17th over to give India another breakthrough. He had Shoaib Malik caught at short fine-leg after the Pakistani allrounder made 26 handy runs in 16 balls.
Shoaib struck three fours and a six in his knock.
India managed to peg back Pakistan with a wicket in the 16 th over. Jadeja got one to spin sharply, and Umar Akmal got an edge to keeper Dhoni.
Akmal played an useful innings in the context, and contributed to his team’s cause with 22 from 16 balls.
Pakistan were rocked again in the 12th over, and lost the important wicket of skipper Afridi for only eight runs. Afridi mis-timed his shot and the ball went straight to Kohli in the deep.
India got their second breakthrough not long after the first when Bumrah sent back Ahmed Shehzad for 25 runs in the tenth over.
Shehzad aimed for the hoick across the line towards the leg side, the ball just did not come on to the bat and he ended up getting the top edge that flew beyond the circle. Jadeja took a well-judged catch to the delight of the home crowd.
After a decent opening partnership, Pakistan lost their first wicket in the 8th over when Raina got the better of Sharjeel Khan.
Sharjeel mis-timed his pull to a long-hop horribly, and Pandya came sprinting in from the boundary to take a spectacular catch. Pakistan opener scored 17 from 24.
Indian bowlers keep Pakistan batsmen under pressure by picking up three quick wickets in the much atticipated Super Ten match of ICC World Twenty20 at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata.
Ashwin was getting appreciable turn with the new ball while Nehra enjoyed some swing.
The ball was jumping from a good length when Ashwin was in action and made life quite difficult for the Pakistan batters.
India captain MS Dhoni decided to bowl first after winning the toss given the conditions at Eden Gardens, Kolkata against Pakistan led by Boom Boom Afridi in the high-octane Super Ten clash of ICC WT20 2016 under the lights.
Political tensions and security concerns in the weeks preceding the World Twenty20, however, left the administrators and fans in a limbo: 'Will they, won't they?'
The dust has truly settled as India and Pakistan gear up to take on each other in yet another high-stakes World Cup clash at the Eden Gardens on Saturday (March 19). The stakes this time, however, will be a lot higher than expected.
India and Pakistan had provided a precursor during the Asia Cup last month when Mohammad Amir's fire was countered by Virat Kohli's ice. India grooved to the Asia Cup title; Pakistan suffered a pre-mature exit and were in chaos, with some barbs even directed at captain Shahid Afridi.
For Pakistan, a win would snap their unending misery against their rivals in World Cups but the bigger picture will be the fact that they would've secured two wins against the two Asian sides of their group and will proceed with an added advantage when they face New Zealand and Australia, both in Mohali.
With the team finding some rhythm and opening its campaign with a big win, Pakistan may not disturb their combination either.
India, on the other hand, have a lot to ponder over. While Ravichandran Ashwin preferred to brush aside the defeat to New Zealand as a bad day in office, India desperately need to recoup their A game. The pressure is now on India who had custard pie smashed on their faces by the largely unheralded spin trio of Mitchell Santner, Ish Sodhi, and Nathan McCullum.
India's middle order, which has been shielded by Kohli's imperious form, was brutally exposed by New Zealand, and Dhoni conceded the batsmen lacked adaptability.
Kolkata is expected to be very warm, humid and partly cloudy on Saturday, with a minimum temperature of 26 degree Celsius. The wicket was a little on the slower side in the night game between Sri Lanka and Afghanistan but suited the batsmen a lot more.
Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Ajinkya Rahane, MS Dhoni (Captain, Wicketkeeper), Yuvraj Singh, Suresh Raina, Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Pawan Negi, Mohammed Shami, Ashish Nehra, Jasprit Bumrah, Harbhajan Singh and Hardik Pandya
Anwar Ali, Wahab Riaz, Shoaib Malik, Mohammad Irfan, Mohammad Amir, Imad Wasim, Shahid Afridi (Captain), Mohammad Hafeez, Mohammad Nawaz, Sarfraz Ahmed (Wicketkeeper), Umar Akmal, Mohammad Sami, Sharjeel Khan, Khalid Latif and Ahmed Shehzad