On Holi eve, India tame Bangladesh
In a nail-biting finish, India beat Bangladesh by 1 run and kept the semifinals hope alive, here on Wednesday. Bangladesh batting order took the match to the last over where they needed 11 from last 6 balls. Skipper Dhoni handed the ball to Hiren Pandya and victory came in the last ball.
Earlier, India’s much vaunted batting line-up struggled on a slow and sluggish track as they just about managed an unimpressive 146/7 against a disciplined Bangladesh attack in a group league encounter of the ICC World Twenty20.
Almost all the Indian batsmen struggled on a track where the ball was not coming onto the bat and Bangladeshi slow bowlers made it even more difficult with their controlled line and length bowling.
Suresh Raina (30 off 23 balls) with a boundary and two sixes was the top-scorer but the contribution was not enough looking at the total posted by the hosts.
Shikhar Dhawan (23), Virat Kohli (24) spent considerable time at the wicket but could never force the pace.
Hardik Pandya (15) was showing positive signs before a Soumya Sarkar stunner in the deep ended what could have been an impactful innings. Yuvraj Singh (3) failed to gauge the pace of the wicket while skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni (13 no off 12 balls) concentrated on the singles and doubles.
Skipper Mahsrafe Mortaza (0/22 in 4 overs) and his deputy Shakib Al Hasan (1/23 in 4 overs) used all their experience to keep things tight. They were ably supported by Shuvagato Hom (1/23 in 3 overs), Mahmudullah Riyadh (1/4 in 1 overs).
Al Amin Hossain (2/37) got important wickets despite being expensive while Mustafizur Rahaman (2/34 in 4 overs) also went for some runs in the final overs. Indian openers looked scratchy during better part of the Powerplay overs as boundaries were hard to come by. Initially Dhawan showed some intent to keep the scoreboard moving. It was in the final over of Power play that both Rohit Sharma and Dhawan hit Mustafizur Rahaman for a six each as 15 came off the first five balls. But Rohit (18) miscued a lofted drive off the last delivery as Sabbir Rahman took a well-judged skier.
In the very next over, Dhawan yorked himself to a Shakib delivery as India were reduced to 45 for two at the end of seven overs. It was Raina, who was the dominant partner during his 50 -run partnership with an unusually subdued Virat Kohli (24 off 24 balls).
Raina hit a couple of sixes off Al-Amin to keep the scoreboard ticking even though the run-rate wasn’t exactly impressive.
With pitch looking difficult for stroke making, Virat could not hit a single boundary for 22 deliveries before dispatching Shuvagato to the cow corner off the 23rd delivery that he faced. But off the very next delivery which was similar and went with the angle, Kohli missed the line completely to get bowled. The remaining batsmen could not force the pace as Bangladesh bowlers had a good day in office.
Brief Score: India 146/7 (20/20 ov) Bangladesh 145/9 (20/20 ov)