IRE vs IND: 2nd T20I, Review- Rahul, Raina and clinical bowlers thrash hapless Ireland

IRE vs IND: 2nd T20I, Review- Rahul, Raina and clinical bowlers thrash hapless Ireland

The Indian spinners picked up 6 wickets between them and conceded 37 runs.

Team India in Ireland
Team India in Ireland. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Ireland were thumped in the first T20I by India. The hosts had no answers to the questions posed by Virat Kohli and Co. While the hosts wished to make a comeback, the Indian captain put forth the Men in Blue’s tactic to chop and change in their next match. Virat stuck to what he said and made as many as four changes in the team. Siddarth Kaul got his maiden match in national colors.

MS Dhoni made way for Dinesh Karthik. KL Rahul also got a game as he replaced Shikhar Dhawan in the eleven. India’s premier pacers in Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah didn’t play either and were swapped with Kaul and Umesh Yadav, who got an opportunity in the format after 65 matches. The alterations didn’t backfire as India romped to victory by 143 runs and clinched the series by 2-0.

Rahul and Raina lead the way

Gary Wilson won the toss and elected to field first and it was in line with Kohli’s wish to bat first. The captain, who came at number six last afternoon, opened with KL Rahul. To his dismay, he perished for the second time to Peter Chase in the series, this time for 9 runs. A mistimed shot from his willow traced into George Dockrell’s palms at the region between square leg and fine leg.

Suresh Raina joined Rahul and the duo blazed away without much fuss. The Blue Army notched 57 runs in the powerplay and looked good for another massive score. Rahul pulled Boyd Rankin for a six to bring up his fourth fifty in T20Is. He also cleared the roped as many as six times in his knock. Just when it seemed as if he was running away with the match, Rahul fell prey to a soft dismissal from Kevin O’Brien’s bowling.

The right-hander scored 70 runs off 36 balls. His wicket also pulled the curtains down on the superlative partnership of 106 runs from 57 deliveries between him and Raina. Rohit Sharma, surprisingly was sent in the middle order, but he faltered and became Kevin’s second wicket in the same over. Manish Pandey didn’t get to bat in the last match and was desperate to make some impact and stake his claim for future matches.

Unfortunately, he never found momentum and crawled to 21 runs at a tad over a run-a-ball. Raina accomplished his half-century in 34 balls and then clobbered Chase for a couple of humongous over-boundaries. O’Brien picked up Raina’s wicket in the 18th over to jolt the hosts. Nevertheless, Hardik Pandya went berserk in the last couple of overs to score 32 runs in 9 balls, which also propelled India’s score of 213.

Clueless Gary Wilson’s men

Yet again, the Irishmen had a daunting task ahead of them. Paul Stirling and James Shannon commenced proceedings and needed to fire from the outset. The start wasn’t an auspicious one as Umesh Yadav got rid of Stirling in the second ball of the innings. William Porterfield was next in and promised, but became Umesh’s second wicket as he resorted to a rather ugly sweep stroke off the speedster.

Shannon, Ireland’s highest scorer in the last match, became Siddarth Kaul’s first victim. The dismissal was reviewed as Kaul’s front-foot seemed to breach the bowling crease, however, the rub of the green favored the debutant. Andrew Balbirnie and O’Brien perished soon after. Yuzvendra Chahal and Pandya accounted for their dismissal and all of a sudden the home team was reduced to 32/5 in 6.3 overs.

Chahal added another wicket to his wickets-column when Simi Singh went for a sweep shot only to be caught plumb in front of the stumps. The onus was on skipper Wilson to arrest the slump and he started with a couple of fours, but his woodwork was rattled by Kuldeep Yadav. George Dockrell tried to hoick the Chinaman only to find the safe hands of Umesh, who was patrolling long-on.

Boyd Rankin and Stuart Thompson spanked a few boundaries to give the Irish contingent in the crowd something to cheer for, but the spin twin of Chahal and Kuldeep turned out to be too hot to handle for the inexperienced tail-enders. Wilson’s men were eventually shot out for 70 runs with 45 balls remaining. It was also the first instance when Kohli’s troops won a T20I contest by an excess of 100 runs.

Brief Scores

India: 213/4 in 20 overs; (KL Rahul 70, Suresh Raina 69; Kevin O’Brien 3/40, Peter Chase 1/42)

Ireland:  70 all out in 12.3 overs: (Gary Wilson 15, William Porterfield 14; Kuldeep Yadav 3/16, Yuzvendra Chahal 3/21)

India beat Ireland by 143 runs

Player of the Match: KL Rahul

Player of the Series: Yuzvendra Chahal