Twitter Reactions: Virat Kohli, Dhoni and Pandya help India post 268 on a slow Manchester pitch

MS Dhoni farmed the strike in the last over and added 16 crucial runs to finish in style.

Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli. (Photo Source: Twitter)

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India have posted a more than challenging total of 268 runs after opting to bat first at the Old Trafford. After starting decently, they lost their way in the middle but half-centuries from Virat Kohli and MS Dhoni made sure that they got close to 270 eventually. Hardik Pandya also came out and cleverly played to score 46 runs at a strike-rate of 121. His partnership with Dhoni was crucial and the Caribbeans will have to bat out of their skins now to stay alive in the tournament.

After opting to bat first, Rohit Sharma seemed to be in the mood to get a big score He played a couple of eye-catching strokes which also included a pull shot for six off Kemar Roach. However, the same bowler nipped one back sharply into the batsman and got Rohit caught behind. Though the third umpire’s decision looked controversial it seemed out on ultra edge and India were rocked early.

Virat Kohli and KL Rahul then steadied the innings. Both the batsmen presented their class with some of the shots they played. The latter was looking in extremely good on 48 but it was again a case of throwing away a start from Rahul. Jason Holder breached his defence with came in with the angle and left his stumps in a mess. Vijay Shankar continued to disappoint batting at number four and could only muster 14 runs before getting out to Roach.

Roach bowled a superb second spell and also got the better of Kedar Jadhav to end with the figures of 3/36 in his 10 overs. Meanwhile, Kohli completed 20,000 international runs of his career after getting to 37 and also notched up his fourth consecutive half-century.

Dhoni and Pandya propel India in the death overs

MS Dhoni came out and struggled early on in his innings much like he did against Afghanistan. Shai Hope also missed his stumping while Kohli looked sublime during the 40-run partnership. However, against the run of play, there was a misjudgement from the Indian captain, and his pull shot off Holder went straight to the mid-wicket fielder’s hand.

Kohli scored 72 runs and again looked a class apart from others on a tough pitch to bat on. His knock was laced with 8 fours. Hardik Pandya walked out and after taking some time in the middle, instilled some life into the innings in the death overs. Even Dhoni played smartly by manoeuvering the ball in the deep and ran two.

Pandya-Dhoni duo stitched the much-needed partnership of 70 runs off 60 deliveries. Pandya got out in the penultimate over but not before scoring brisk 46 runs off 38 balls with five fours to his name. But then MS Dhoni, the last over specialist was in the middle and he more than made up for his earlier dot balls in the end. He denied singles to Kuldeep Yadav and farmed strike in the last over to face Oshane Thomas.

India added 16 runs in the final over and the score was propelled to 268 after 50 overs. Dhoni smashed two sixes and a four off Thomas to finish with a fine unbeaten half-century (56*). This looks a good total now and the Windies will have to bat really well against the spinners to get to the target.

Here’s how Twitter reacted: