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Sunday, 16 June 2013

India vs Pakistan: ICC Champions Trophy 2013 - Report

India beat Pakistan by eight wickets (D/L method) to register their first ever victory against the arch rivals in the Champions Trophy.
While the Indian bowlers did well to bowl Pakistan out for 165, India’s visibly improved fielding played a vital role in the effort. Dhoni’s young brigade were quick on their feet, accurate with their throws at the stumps and showed presence of mind to wrap up the opposition with two balls to spare. India’s batsmen then kept their team firmly in the driver’s seat through the target revisions due to intermittent rains to take the team to victory.
Indian bowlers made early dents in the Pakistan line-up to leave them three wickets down before heavy showers cut 10 overs down from each side’s innings. More interruptions later in the second innings forced the target to be revised several times.
Bhuvneshwar Kumar, who made a spectacular international debut against Pakistan, once again impressed by claiming top-order batsmen to finish with two for nineteen in eight overs. Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin and Ishant Sharma claimed two wickets each.
Suresh Raina took a superb catch at second slip to help send back Nasir Jamshed off Kumar early in the innings. The wiry pacer stemmed the flow of runs from one end and struck after the brief first rain interruption to send back Mohammad Hafeez with MS Dhoni taking a diving catch.
Ashwin then followed up with the wicket of Kamran Akmal. Virat Kohli took a good catch at leg-slip after the delivery took the inside edge of the bat and bounced off the keeper’s thigh.
With Pakistan three down for 56, skipper Misbah-ul-Haq joined Asad Shafiq in the middle to stabilise the innings but heavy showers interrupted the rescue act.
When the match resumed Dhoni’s most successful bowler, Kumar couldn’t be brought into the attack as he had bowled out his eight overs – the revised quota of each bowler. The blossoming partnership between Shafiq and Misbah was halted at 54 by Ravindra Jadeja. The left-arm spinner castled the Pakistan captain for 22. Four overs later an Ishant Sharma delivery took a nick of Shafiq’s bat and Dhoni did the rest; pulling off a brilliant diving catch behind the stumps.
India did not let go of their stranglehold on the Pakistan batting line-up and continued to build pressure by claiming wickets at regular intervals.
Trapped leg before by Jadeja, Shoaib Malik was the next to depart while Ashwin bowled Wahab Riaz in the next over to leave Pakistan on 140 for seven.
Rohit Sharma’s low diving catch in the covers 19 runs later ended Saeed Ajmal’s 16-ball knock of five runs off Ishant Sharma in the penultimate over. And a direct-hit by Kohli ran out Junaid Khan for a duck off the next delivery. With nine wickets gone, Pakistan endeavoured to finish their quota of overs, but, the wicketless Umesh Yadav bowling the last over effected a run out to end the innings. 
Facing the revised 168-run target, Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan came out to open the innings for India. Scoring at a good pace they had taken India to 47 without loss in 8.1 overs when rain halted the proceedings.
When the Indian openers returned to the crease the innings was further reduced to 36 overs and the target revised to 157. A bit later, Rohit Sharma perished hitting a Saeed Ajmal delivery to mid-wicket. While Dhawan and Kohli looked to take the innings forward, rain again brought out the covers in the next over forcing play to be suspended with India on 63 for one in 11.3 overs.
The target then had to be revised again and read 102 from 22 overs. Which meant India needed 39 from 10.3 overs when play resumed.
Runs had begun to flow from Dhawan’s bat when the left-hand opener departed two runs short of a half-century. After hitting two boundaries off Riaz earlier in the over, he holed out at third-man.
Coming together when India needed 24 to win, Kohli and Dinesh Karthik took the team across the line with 17 balls to spare.   
Brief scores: Pakistan 165 all out in 39.4 overs (A Shafiq 41, B Kumar 2/19, R Jadeja 2/30) lost to India 102/2 in 19.1 overs (S Dhawan 48, V Kohli 22*) by eight wickets under D/L method
Man of the Match: Bhuvneshwar Kumar for his match-winning spell of 8-2-19-2
Presentation ceremony:
Misbah-ul-Haq is booed as he comes to speak: "Disappointing performance again with the bat, the weather also played a part, difficult to get in and out so many times. In this sort of format, it is too short for the teams because you have one bad day at the start of the tournament, you are almost out of it. I think the bowling did okay for us, the way they are establishing themselves, really a plus for Pakistan." Enjoyed the tournament? "Not much."

MS Dhoni gets a big cheer as he walks up: "The fan support has always been there, no matter where we play. The whole team is doing really well, in all the three departments. We are the top fielding side in world cricket as of now, we need to keep the intensity up. Bhuvneshwar bowls very good areas, and can swing the ball, he's someone who has given us the early breakthroughs, good to see him bowl well."

Man of the Match is Bhuvneshwar Kumar: "There was a bit of bounce in the wicket, wasn't really nervous because it was Pakistan, but do feel nervous whichever game you play."


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