India trounce listless Pakistan, win by 5 wickets
The Men in Blue initially made the run chase of 84 runs look difficult as they lost 2 wickets for 2 runs in the very first over. After the initial jitters, Virat Kohli steadied the ship scoring 49 off 51 balls before being caught leg before by Sami. Dhoni finished off the run chase with a flamboyant four handing India the victory. Earlier, Indian bowlers demolished the Pakistan batting line up with a superlative show as they bundled out the arch-rivals for a paltry 83 in their Asia Cup T20 cricket match, here today.
Collective effort from the bowlers was backed brilliantly by the fielders as it became a 'no-contest' from the moment India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni opted to field on a pacer- friendly wicket.
The Indian bowlers made good use of the conditions and the fielding unit also put relentless pressure to effect two run-outs as it threw Pakistani innings in disarray.
Ashish Nehra (1/20) and Jasprit Bumrah (1/8) dealt initial blows while new sensation Hardik Pandya (3/8) kept up the pressure and recorded the best figures among the bowlers.
Such was the pressure on Pakistan, that spin twins Ravindra Jadeja (2/11) and Ravichandran Ashwin were brought in the 12th and 13th over respectively.
The only Pakistan player to cross the 10-run mark was wicketkeeper Sarfraz Ahmed (25). This was their lowest score in a T20 against India as they managed only 8 boundaries.
Nehra struck with the very third delivery when he got one to kick up from length. Mohammed Hafeez (4), failing to read the extra bounce, attempted a square cut with little room to play the shot and Dhoni took an easy catch.
Left-handed Sharjeel Khan (7) pulled Jasprit Bumrah in the fourth over but was undone by the extra bounce and seam movement as he was caught by Ajinkya Rahane in the first slip.
In the fifth over of the innings and the third bowled by Nehra, India could have made it three had umpire SIS Saikat not bungled with an easy caught behind decision of Khurram Manzoor.
Manzoor tried to play an ambitious dilscoop but only managed a tickle to Dhoni but the Bangladeshi umpire ruled it not out. So much so that Dhoni had a word with umpire.
But as luck would have it, Manzoor (10) was run-out in the very next over in freakish manner. Striker Shoaib Malik tapped one towards short cover and non-striker Manzoor immediately responded by taking a few strides.
But an alert Virat Kohli sprinted and successfully aimed at the stumps at the non-striker s end with Manzoor being hopelessly short of his crease.
Hardik Pandya made it 35 for four when Malik (4) chased a fullish delivery moving away, giving Dhoni his second catch of the match.
It didn't take much time to make it 35 for five as Yuvraj, introduced in the attack before Ashwin and Jadeja, struck with his first ball. He flighted one that dipped and spun into Umar Akmal (3), who played a half-forward defensive stroke. It was a plumb leg before and umpire did not take much time to raise the dreaded finger.
Skipper Shahid Afridi (2) challenged India's best fielder Jadeja going for a non-existent second run only to be run-out by a fair two feet distance, leaving Pakistan gasping at 42 for six by the end of 8th over.
At the halfway stage, Pakistan were 47 for six and truly out of the game.