Twitter Reactions: Fifties from Rahul and Kishan help India chase 189 in the warm-up game against England

Hardik Pandya didn't bowl for India while Ravi Ashwin was the most economical bowler.

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KL Rahul
KL Rahul. (Photo by Matthew Lewis-ICC/ICC via Getty Images)

India have started their T20 World Cup campaign with a win over England in the high-scoring warm-up game. Mohammed Shami, KL Rahul and Ishan Kishan starred for the Men in Blue. It was Shami first who scalped three wickets and then the Rahul-Kishan duo smashed runs at will in the steep chase which made it easy eventually for India to win the game.

Earlier, Virat Kohli didn’t hesitate at all to opt to bowl after winning the toss. The pitch at the ICC Academy Ground was absolutely flat and England’s opening pair of Jos Buttler and Jason Roy feasted on the Indian bowlers. The 36-run opening stand was broken by Mohammed Shami with his fiery pace castling Buttler. Run-scoring slowed down soon and Roy and Dawid Malan also departed to leave England at 77/3 in the 10th over.

However, England are known to keep playing their shots through the innings irrespective of the situation and that is what they did. The likes of Jonny Bairstow, Moeen Ali and Liam Livingstone punished the Indian bowling which was wayward at times. Moeen, in particular, continued his good touch with the bat from the IPL Final where he played for the Chennai Super Kings.

The southpaw a quick-fire 43 off just 20 balls with four fours and a couple of sixes as England managed to post 188 runs for the loss of five wickets. India tried out only five bowlers and most importantly, Hardik Pandya didn’t bowl. Shami returned with the figures of 3/40 while Rahul Chahar conceded 43 runs in his four overs. Bumrah was at his best as usual returning with 1/26 while Bhuvneshwar Kumar’s worrisome form (0/54) continued. Ashwin, on the other hand, was the most economical bowler among all five.

Rahul and Ishan guide India in the chase

The 189-run chase was a huge one for India and they decided to rest Rohit Sharma for this game. Ishan Kishan was given a chance to open the innings and didn’t let the opportunity go in vain. He and KL Rahul start cautiously in the first three overs and then the latter opened his arms smashing boundaries at will.

The start which seemed slow early was soon a blistering one as Rahul raced to a 23-ball fifty. He put on an exhibition of some excellent shots in the 82-run partnership before getting out on 51. Ishan Kishan was playing at a strike-rate of around 100 by then and took charge of the innings after Rahul got out.

Along with Virat Kohli, he ran well between the wickets but made sure to take on the spinners, especially Adil Rashid, churning out more than 20 runs in one of his overs which brought the chase very much under the control. At the other end, Kohli couldn’t get off the blocks yet again and got out to Livingstone scoring only 11 runs off 13 balls.

Rishabh Pant was sent at number four and even he tonked a few in the latter stages of the game. However, with 39 runs needed off 28 deliveries, Ishan Kishan decided to walk off having scored 70 off 46 balls. Suryakumar Yadav walked in to the bat but couldn’t perform as expected. His wicket in the 18th over made things interesting and the equation came down to 20 runs off the last two overs.

Chris Jordan kept the 19th over under control in the first half but bowled a couple of no-balls (one waist-high and one front-foot) and the struggling Hardik Pandya feasted on the outside edges to get a couple of boundaries. Rishabh Pant then finished the proceedings with a massive six as India got over the line with six balls and seven wickets in hand.

Here’s how Twitter reacted:


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