Captain Babar Azam rued Pakistan’s batting collapse after his side suffered a seven-wicket defeat against arch-rival India in the World Cup. India dominated with the bat and ball in the marquee encounter. India had also scored a comprehensive win against Pakistan in the Asia Cup last month. Babar Azam (50), and Mohammad Riawan (49), stepped up for Pakistan but the team lost eight wickets for 36 runs and collapsed from 155/2 to 191 all out.
“We started well, good partnership. We just planned to play normal cricket and build partnerships. Suddenly there was a collapse and we could not finish well. Not good for us, the way we started, our target was 280-290 but the collapse cost us. The total was not good. We are not up to the mark with the new ball,” Babar said in a post-match presentation on Saturday.
Pakistan skipper praised India captain who scored a magnificent 86 of 63 balls with the help of six boundaries and six maximum.
“The way Rohit played, was an outstanding innings. We just tried to take wickets, but that didn’t happen.”
Coming to the match, Indian batters looked well poised from the beginning to chase the Pakistan total.
Shubman Gill, who made his first appearance in the ODI World Cup, scored some scintillating hits before losing his wicket. He struck three consecutive fours off Hasan Ali in the second over of the Indian innings.
Shubman was out on Shaheen Shah Afridi’s bowling and the hope his wicket may have generated among Pakistan fans was short-lived.
Virat Kohli joined Rohit, who was smooth in his power hitting. Kohli also came up with some strong blows before he was caught off the bowling of Hasan Ali during the powerplay.
Rohit and Shreyas took charge and strode along even as Pakistan bowlers tried hard to get a breakthrough.
The sea of Indian fans, many of them dressed in blue, cheered and waved as Indian batsmen struck in the match played at the Narendra Modi Stadium here.
Rohit fell short of his well-deserved century by 14 runs. Shaheen claimed his second wicket of the night with Rohit walked back to the pavilion with a score of 86.
In his well-paced innings, Rohit crossed the milestone of 300 ODI sixes which have come in 254 matches. With 351 sixes in 308 games, former Pakistan cricketer Shahid Afridi leads the tally, while West Indies legend Chris Gayle hammered 331 maximums in 301 encounters.
After Rohit’s departure, Shreyas 53* and KL 19* guided India to a comprehensive 7-wicket victory to make it 8-0 in the World Cup between the two arch-rivals.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by String Reveals staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)
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