India hit Pakistan for six
India had won all their previous five meetings against Pakistan in the World Cup and it was no different Sunday as the defending champions defeated their neighbours by 76 runs to take the advantage to a perfect tennis scoreline of 6-0.
India once again came out on top in the high-octane clash to defeat Pakistan in their World Cup opener at the picturesque Adelaide Oval. A special century by vice-captain Virat Kohli (107) guided India to 300/7 which Pakistan failed to chase down, being bowled out for 224 in 47 overs. Statistics showed that Pakistan have never chased more than 262 successfully and India have always defended a total of 300 or more in the quadrennial event. Both teams allowed the records to continue.
Opting to bat, India got off to a fluent start through openers Rohit Sharma (15) and Shikhar Dhawan (73). Rohit looked in prime touch until he gifted away his wicket while trying to pull a not-so-short delivery in the eighth over.
However, Dhawan struck an important second-wicket 129-run partnership with Kohli which gave India the platform to put up a big total. Dhawan looked good to score a hundred but confusion in the 30th over with Kohli resulted in him being run out.
It was the perfect opportunity for Pakistan to capitalise with India at 163 for two with 20 overs to go. However, big-hitter Suresh Raina made sure his wicket counted for India as he smashed 74 off just 56 balls which boosted his team’s run rate close to run-a-ball.
His innings, which was studded with five fours and three sixes, made Kohli take the backseat as he targeted leg-spinner Yasir Shah (0/60). Meanwhile, Kohli played the anchor’s innings and applied his sublime touch to notch up his 22nd One-Day International (ODI) hundred, which was punctuated by eight boundaries. For stats freaks, this is the first century by an Indian against Pakistan in a World Cup contest.
Kohli was given reprieve twice during his innings. In the beginning, he was dropped by Yasir at long-on, a difficult chance. Had Yasir taken the catch, it would have been a blinder. The 26-year-old was again dropped by wicketkeeper Umar Akmal while at 76. India were looking at getting a 330-plus total while batting at 273/2 in the 45th over when Sohail Khan (5/55) struck for Pakistan by clinching Kohli’s prized wicket. A tired Kohli slashed hard at a wide ball only to be caught behind, bringing an end to the 110-run third-wicket partnership with Raina.
In reply, Pakistan looked steady at the start despite losing experienced batsman Younis Khan (6) cheaply in the fourth over. Opener Ahmed Shehzad (47) and Haris Sohail (36) were batting solidly at 79/1 in the 18th over when the latter edged one to Raina in the slips.
Soon three wickets, Ahmed Shehzad, Sohaib Maqsood (0) and Umar Akmal (0), in the span of eight deliveries turned the match in favour of the two-time champions. Suddenly from 102/2, Pakistan were tottering at 103/5. The lower order could not offer much of a fight even as captain Misbah-ul-Haq (76) scored his 39th half-century before eventually being dismissed in the 46th over.
Rohit Sharma c Misbah-ul-Haq b Sohail Khan 15, Shikhar Dhawan run out (Misbah) 73, Virat Kohli c Umar Akmal b Sohail Khan 107, Suresh Raina c Haris Sohail b Sohail Khan 74, MS Dhoni c Misbah-ul-Haq b Sohail Khan 18, Ravindra Jadeja b Wahab Riaz 3, Ajinkya Rahane b Sohail Khan 0, R Ashwin not out 1, Mohammed Shami not out 3; Extras (lb 2, w 3, nb 1) 6; Total (for seven wickets in 50 overs) 300; Fall of wickets 1-34 (Sharma, 7.3 overs), 2-163 (Dhawan, 29.5), 3-273 (Kohli, 45.2), 4-284 (Raina, 47.3), 5-296 (Jadeja, 48.6), 6-296 (Dhoni, 49.1), 7-296 (Rahane, 49.2); Bowling Mohammad Irfan 10-0-58-0, Sohail Khan 10-0-55-5, Shahid Afridi 8-0-50-0, Wahab Riaz 10-0-49-1, Yasir Shah 8-0-60-0, Haris Sohail 4-0-26-0
Ahmed Shehzad c Jadeja b Yadav 47, Younis Khan c Dhoni b Mohammed Shami 6, Haris Sohail c Raina b Ashwin 36, Misbah-ul-Haq c Rahane b Mohammed Shami 76, Sohaib Maqsood c Raina b Yadav 0, Umar Akmal c Dhoni b Jadeja 0, Shahid Afridi c Kohli b Mohammed Shami 22, Wahab Riaz c Dhoni b Mohammed Shami 4, Yasir Shah c Yadav b MM Sharma 13, Sohail Khan c Yadav b MM Sharma 7, Mohammad Irfan not out 1; Extras (lb 1, w 10, nb 1) 12; Total (all out in 47 overs) 224; Fall of wickets 1-11 (Younis Khan, 3.2 overs), 2-79 (Haris Sohail, 17.6), 3-102 (Ahmed Shehzad, 23.2), 4-102 (Sohaib Maqsood, 23.4), 5-103 (Umar Akmal, 24.4), 6-149 (Shahid Afridi, 34.1), 7-154 (Wahab Riaz, 34.4), 8-203 (Yasir Shah, 42.5), 9-220 (Misbah-ul-Haq, 45.4), 10-224 (Sohail Khan, 46.6); Bowling Umesh Yadav 10-0-50-2, Md Shami 9-1-35-4, Mohit Sharma 9-0-35-1, Suresh Raina 1-0-6-0, R Ashwin 8-3-41-1, R Jadeja 10-0-56-1