India defeated Pakistan by 89 runs by DLS method in the most awaited World Cup clash at Old Trafford stadium, Manchester on Sunday.
This was India’s seventh win in the seven matches played against Pakistan in the quadrennial event so far. India vice-captain Rohit Sharma bagged Player of the Match award for his 140 runs off 113 balls. He got a lease of life when an easy run-out was missed by Fakhar Zaman when he was on 32. In a bid to sneak in an extra run, Rohit had gone for all the money but Fakhar Zaman threw the ball at the wrong end to give the Hitman another life and the latter grabbed the opportunity with both hands.
Winning the toss, Pakistan captain Sarfaraz Ahmed invited India to bat first. The Men in Blue started cautiously with Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul. The duo added 136 runs for the first wicket and gave India the start they wanted.
KL Rahul, who was opening the batting with Rohit Sharma in the absence of an injured Shikhar Dhawan, scored a gritty 57 before getting out caught by Babar Azam at covers off a Wahab Riaz delivery. On the other side, Rohit continued his onslaught and stitched a 98-run partnership with skipper Virat Kohli.
While trying to boost the run rate, Rohit fell to Wahab Riaz at short fine leg playing a paddled sweep off a Hasan Ali delivery. But he already had done the damage. Though wickets fell at regular intervals for India after this, the run machine made sure that India reach a handsome total.
India made 336 runs at the loss of 5 wickets in their quota of 50 overs.
Chasing a stiff target, Pakistan lost Imam-ul-Haq (7) to Vijay Shankar — who was bowling in place of injured Bhuvneshwar Kumar. Pakistan’s scorecard read 13-1 when Babar Azam came in and stitched a 104-run partnership with Fakhar Zaman (62) for the 2nd wicket. Babar was bowled out by Kuldeep Yadav two runs short of his half-century and India didn’t look back since then.
Wickets kept falling for Pakistan and no player could dig in his heels to make a way for the Men in Green. The clouds opened up and rain interrupted play. And when the rain stopped, the DLS method handed Pakistan an unassailable target of 136 runs off 30 balls. Pakistan lost the match by 89 runs as they could manage only 212 runs in 40 overs.
Kuldeep Yadav was the star with his figures of 2/32. Hardik Pandya and Vijay Shankar also took two wickets apiece.
Brief scorecard: India 336-5 in 50 overs (Rohit Sharma 140, Virat Kohli 77, Mohammad Amir 3/47, Wahab Riaz 1/71); Pakistan 212-6 in 40 overs (Fakhar Zaman 62, Babar Azam 48, Kuldeep Yadav 2/32, Vijay Shankar 2/22)