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World Cup 2019, Match 22: India vs Pakistan – Who Said What

India beat Pakistan by 89 runs as per the DLS method.

Team India
Team India. (Photo Source: Twitter)

The big match, the epic clash, the mother of all battles in the World Cup, didn’t quite turn out to be that exciting a contest as Team India was a far superior side on the day. After days of detailed talks about rain not just hampering but even washing out the India vs Pakistan match, it did make a couple of appearances but not before the 47th over of the Indian innings.

It was Sarfaraz Ahmed who got the coin on his preferred side and asked India to bat. This was, in fact, the first time a captain chose to bowl in an India vs Pakistan World Cup match. Rohit Sharma and his new opening partner KL Rahul made him immediately repent the decision. They shared a 136-run opening partnership before Rahul fell for 57. Rohit at the other end took the onus upon himself in the absence of Shikhar Dhawan.

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He scored at a healthy strike rate from the go and played his shots all around the park making life difficult for the Pakistan team. The fact that most his bowlers barring Mohammad Amir failed to create any pressure made matters worse for Sarfaraz who wasn’t imaginative with his tactics either. On the back of Rohit’s 24th ODI hundred and Virat Kohli’s fifty the Indian team posted 336/5 in 50 overs.

When India came out to ball it wasn’t good news as Bhuvneshwar Kumar hobbled off the field after just 2.4 overs of his spell. He wouldn’t take any further part in the contest but Vijay Shankar who completed the last two balls of his incomplete over got India the breakthrough. He hit Imam-ul-Haq plumb in front of the stumps with an inswinger. There was a good partnership after that but Kuldeep Yadav struck twice to give Pakistan fatal blows.

Then Hardik Panday the bowler also came into the party and picked a couple of wickets, Shankar in his second spell also accounted for another success. There was a second rain interruption and the DLS target for Pakistan in 40 overs was 302. It was a tame end to the contest as the Men in Green lost the game by 89 runs ending their inning on 212/6. Team India thus continued their dominance over Pakistan in World Cup matches and the rivalry now stands at 7-0.

Here is what the Man of the Match and the two captains said:

Man of the Match, Rohit Sharma said:

“Really happy with the way we played as a team. We wanted to get out on the park and play a game of cricket. It can get frustrating at times as our last game was washed out due to rain. We had an intent of playing solid cricket and we did that today. I was unhappy with the way I played that shot. He just pushed mid-on back and got fine-leg up; that was a little misjudgement from my side.

When you’re set you want to get as many runs as possible, so it was a disappointment when I got out. I wasn’t thinking about the double hundred, trust me. It was a good pitch and I wanted to continue batting as long as possible. We wanted to kill the game there with our partnership, but unfortunately, I got out at the wrong time.

I think Rahul played really well, he took time and that was required at that point. Can’t go out there and play shots right away. He took his time, saw the new ball of but unfortunately even he got out at the wrong time. The opening spell was always going to be threatening and we wanted to play out the new ball; we got a good start and we built on from there.

Losing captain Sarfaraz Ahmed said:

“We won a good toss but unfortunately we didn’t bowl in the right areas, Credit goes to Rohit, he played really well. Our plans was to pitch it up but we didn’t hit the right areas. We won a good toss but we just didn’t capitalize and conceded too may runs. I think the ball was turning which is why we picked two spinners, who bowled well, but the Indian batsmen played them really well.

We were going really well with the bat as well, but we lost two-three quick wickets in the middle which is when we lost the match. It is definitely getting tougher and tougher but we have four matches and hopefully, we’ll win all four of them.”

Winning captain Virat Kohli said:

“To be honest, the pitch wouldn’t have made much of a difference. The only factor that I thought was different was that the pitch started turning towards the end of our innings. The template has been really nice in the first three games – Rohit single-handedly winning us in the first game, a team effort in the second and today was Rohit’s day again. It allowed me to play a certain kind of role and it allowed Hardik to come and explode in the end. It is going really nicely at the moment.

Kuldeep was brilliant, those guys were only trying to play him out. A longer spell helped in that situation and he was getting into rhythm. That ball to dismiss Babar was brilliant. This is the best he has been bowling since coming to England. I think they outplayed us in the CT final, but apart from that we have played good cricket. We never approach these games from the fans’ atmosphere, but as cricketers we need to be professional.

Bhuvi’s case looks like a niggle, a case of slipping on the footmarks. It doesn’t look too serious at the moment and looks like he could recover in a couple of games from now, maximum of three games. But we have Shami with us and it shouldn’t be much of a worry for us.”

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