India savours 'mother of all mismatches'

Skipper Virat Kohli delivered his verdict on India in the wake of their 124-run victory over Pakistan, in a rain-affected ICC Champions Trophy match at Edgbaston.

After being asked to bat after losing the toss, India got off to a great start with openers Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma piling up a 136 run partnership before the Shikhar was caught in deep off a full-toss from young leggie Shadab, that he could hit anywhere.

That was not the end of the run spree, with Hardik Pandya hitting sixes off the first three balls of left-arm spinner Imad Wasim's last over of the innings. In reply, Pakistan were all out for 164 as India won by 124 runs via the Duckworth/Lewis method.

Subsequently, Pakistan also lost opener Ahmed Shehzad and Babar Azam cheaply for 12 and 8 runs respectively, before Mohammad Hafeez provided the side with some resistance by his 33-run knock.

The right-hander came out to bat at number 5 after the dismissal of Yuvraj Singh, who hit a superb 32-ball 53. While he was pleased with the win, Kohli was not impressed with India's fielding.

Sharma went 43 balls without a boundary before cover-driving and pulling Wahab for a four and a six off successive deliveries.

While he was pleased with the win, Kohli was not impressed with India's fielding.

However, Yuvraj's innings stood out despite the team's all-round effort, and Kohli thanked his senior teammate for taking the pressure off him when he wasn't middling the ball well.

The good thing for them though was that Azhar managed to show his class as he passed fifty before falling a couple of balls later as his side started to ball behind in the run rate.

It was the end of a 119-ball innings featuring two sixes and seven fours. When Rohit Sharma got out in the 36th over in the match which was reduced to 48 overs, it looked as though the Pakistan bowlers would be able to restrict India to an achievable total. Another notable performance for Kohli's side came from Hardik Pandya, who was promoted above former India captain MS Dhoni in the batting order.

When asked about the inclusion of an extra seamer in the squad for Sunday's game, Kohli said, "We made a decision to play an extra seamer against Pakistan purely because of the fact that it becomes a wicket taking option".

Umesh Yadav (three for 30) ended the match when Hasan fell for a duck. That chance was enough for him to grow into confidence, as he took on Pakistani bowlers in the depth overs.

  • Stacy Allen