Monday, July 22, 2024

India inch towards T20 WC semis after thrashing Bangladesh


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North Sound, June 22: Hardik Pandya produced an all-round show while Kuldeep Yadav foxed Bangladesh batters with his guile as India all but assured themselves of a semifinals berth through a dominant 50-run victory in their second Super 8 game of the T20 World Cup here on Saturday.
Star batter Virat Kohli (37 off 28) found much-needed rhythm before Shivam Dube (34 off 24) and Hardik (50 not out off 27) pushed India to 196 for five, the highest total at this venue so far.
Bangladesh could never really challenge India in the steep run-chase and ended up with 146/8 in 20 overs, their second straight loss in the Super 8s.
India will meet their match in Australia, the two unbeaten teams so far, in their final Super 8 fixture in St Lucia on Monday.Kuldeep (3/19), who got his opportunity in the Caribbean leg of the competition, made the Bangladesh batters look clueless with the effective use of googly and stock ball.Bumrah (2/13 in four) produced a frugal effort as usual.Bangladesh skipper Najmul Shanto (40 off 32) played some attacking shots including two sixes over fine leg off Hardik but did not get support from others as the batters let the team down once again.After Litton Das (13 off 10) crisply pulled Hardik for a six over deep mid-wicket, the all-rounder had him caught at deep square leg the very next ball.It was a premeditated walk across the stumps from Litton that led to his dismissal.Kuldeep then got into the act and it did not take him long to make an impact.
He got rid of opener Tanzid Hasan (29) with a wrong one that the batter failed to pick, trapping him in front of the stumps.Bangladesh’s stand out batter so far, Towhid Hridoy, went for a sweep against Kuldeep but missed it completely to be adjudged leg before.After being 76 for three in the 12th over, Bangladesh could only delay the inevitable.Earlier, struggling for runs since his selection in the India squad, Dube once again was slow off the blocks before smoking three sixes to make an impact towards the end of the innings.Hardik provided the final flourish to take the team close to 200. The all-rounder completed his 50 off the final ball of the innings.Skipper Rohit Sharma (23 off 11) was happy to lose the toss at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium and alongside Kohli (37 off 28), was able to play his shots from the get go unlike the earlier games.Bangladesh started with spinners from both ends, an interesting move against the two right-handers.After three fours and a six, Rohit made room to deposit Shakib Al Hasan over extra cover but ended up mistiming it to be caught.Kohli too meant business with the pick of his shots being the 94m six off Mustafizur Rahman to the cow corner region.
He then welcomed leggie Rishad Hossain with a straight six before getting foxed by a slow off-cutter from pacer Tanzim Hasan.
Two balls later, the pacer got a delivery to jump off the length, kissing Suyakumar Yadav’s gloves for a double strike in the over, leaving India at 83 for three in 10 overs.Rishabh Pant (36 off 24) then brought the momentum back in India’s favour by collecting two fours and a six over deep midwicket off Mustafizur who had a rare off day.In the next over, Pant took the attack to Rishad before falling to the reverse sweep for the second consecutive innings. Dube and Hardik then shared a 53-run stand to take the innings forward.
Hardik ended up with four boundaries and three sixes while Dube targeted the deep midwicket boundary against the spinners with success. (PTI)


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