India 141-2 (Kohli 57no, Sharma 56) beat
Bangladesh 138-7 (Mishra 3-26) by 8 wickets
ICC World Twenty20 2014 Group Two, Dhaka
India comfortably beat Bangladesh by eight wickets in their Super 10 encounter in Mirpur on Friday, assuring themselves of a place in the last-four of the ICC World Twenty20 2014.
Thanks to half-centuries from Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli, India won with nine balls to spare as they marched into a semi-final of this tournament for the first time since winning the 2007 edition in South Africa.
This was after they had restricted Bangladesh to 138 for seven in their allotted 20 overs.
Chasing 139 runs, the Indian start was once again slow as the two openers, Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma, were very watchful. Only 13 runs came in the first three overs as Dhawan (1) was dismissed cheaply once again, increasing concerns over his form.
But Sharma, in the company of Kohli, added 100 runs for the second wicket as the two batsmen made sure that no upsets would be forthcoming on the evening. They shortly picked up the run-rate with the 50-run mark coming in the seventh over. Only six overs later, they were celebrating the 100-run mark, as they were helped by some shoddy fielding from Bangladesh.
Sharma brought up his seventh T20I half-century off 39 balls, with four fours and one six. He fell quickly thereafter, out for 56 runs. He faced 44 balls in all, hitting one more six after his milestone. Unlike in the previous game, Yuvraj Singh didn’t come out to bat this time. Instead it was skipper MS Dhoni lining up for his first hit in the tournament.
He finished off things in style, with a six, and finished unbeaten on 22 off only 12 balls, with one four and one other six to his credit.
At the other end, Kohli finished unbeaten on 57 off 50 balls, with three fours and one six. His sixth T20I half-century had come off 41 balls. Mashrafe Mortaza (1-23) and Al-Amin Hossain (1-38) were the wicket-takers.
Earlier, India won a third consecutive toss and opted to field once again. Bangladesh made a quick start with 13 runs coming off the first over bowled by Bhuvneshwar Kumar (1-21).
But the Indian attack settled down shortly keeping the hosts quiet. It played on the hosts’ patience and the ploy worked, as Tamim Iqbal (6) once again threw away his wicket. Ravichandran Ashwin (2-15) was the bowler and he took two in two balls, dismissing Shamsur Rahman for a first-ball duck.
Matters got worse as Shakib Al Hasan (1) was bowled in the very next over, with the home team reduced to 21 for three and the crowd going dead silent.
But opener Anamul Haque made sure that there was something to cheer about as he put on 46 runs with skipper Mushfiqur Rahim for the fourth wicket. The latter scored 24 runs off 21 balls with four fours, but it was Haque who did the real damage.
He hit 44 runs off 43 balls, with five fours and two sixes, holding the Bangladesh innings together. He was fifth out in the 13th over, while Rahim had departed two overs earlier.
Thereafter Amit Mishra (3-26) was deployed and the in-form leg-spinner worked his magic as he restricted the tail-enders and squeezed the scoring rate.
It was down to Mahmudullah, who hit 33 runs off 23 balls, with five fours and one six, to help the score past the 100-run mark.
If not for his hitting in the end overs, Bangladesh wouldn’t have reached the total that they did in the end, even if it didn’t prove to be any difficult for India. Mohammad Shami (1-29) was the only other wicket-taker.
© Cricket World 2014