Tuesday 10 June 2008 

India Cruise To 140-Run Win Over Pakistan

Piyush Chawla and Praveen Kumar took four wickets as India turned in a supreme all-round display to beat Pakistan by 140 runs in the second Kitply Tri-Nations One Day International series match in Mirpur.

India reached a score of 330 for eight with Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir and Yuvraj Singh hitting half-centuries while Pakistan were bowled out for 190, sealing India's record victory over Pakistan on a day when they played a record 114th ODI against each other.

Sehwag was dropped by Kamran Akmal while Gambhir was twice dropped in the slips by Younus Khan and both men made Pakistan pay for those misses.

After 20 overs, the pair had added 143 runs without loss but both were dismissed by young left-armer Wahab Riaz, later warned out of the attack for bowling too many high no balls, both men caught behind by Akmal, Sehwag for 89 and Gambhir for 62.

The pair put on 155 for the first wicket, Sehwag facing 76 balls, hitting 13 fours and one six, with Gambhir facing 62 and hitting six fours.

Pakistan gained a third wicket when debutant Yusuf Pathan was caught by Iftikhar Anjum off the bowling of Shahid Afridi for three but India remained handily placed, to say the least, on 200 for three after 30 overs.

The scoring rate slowed after that and Afridi struck when Rohit Sharma (nine) was deceived by a ball that didn't turn and played on. Yuvraj scored a fluent 55 from 54 balls which included three sixes before he was bowled by Umar Gul.

Mahendra Singh Dhoni (24) had two runs before been trapped in front by Sohail Tanvir. Suresh Raina (26) and Irfan Pathan (18) were dismissed by Umar Gul before Younus Khan delivered the final over due to Wahab's problems, conceding just three runs.

Pakistan were soon in trouble when Salman Butt (nine) and Younus Khan (nought) were dismissed in consecutive deliveries by Kumar. Butt was superbly caught by Rohit Sharma while Younus edged behind. Mohammad Yousuf looked good for his 11 before he was trapped in front by Kumar and when Kamran Akmal (39) was caught by Yusuf Pathan at mid-on for Kumar's fourth wicket, Pakistan were staring down the barrel at 81 for four.

Misbah-ul-Haq stroked a fluent 24 and Shahid Afridi a belligerent 23 as they tried to offer captain Shoaib Malik, who was the penultimate man to fall, on 55, some support, but India's bowlers kept up the pressure and Pakistan were unable to cope, Chawla finishing with four for 40 and Kumar four for 53.

Unless Bangladesh beat India and run rate comes in to play, Pakistan should still meet India in the final on Saturday but their chances of victory will require a vastly improved performance.

Energetic India named a side with no man over 30 while Pakistan, who have been restricted to games against Bangladesh and Zimbabwe for the last 12, showed a lack of discipline with the ball and were poor in the field.

Suresh Raina was recalled to for India as Pathan made his ODI debut.

Pakistan made one change from the side that thrashed Bangladesh by 70 runs in the opening match, pacer Iftikhar Anjum replacing spinner Fawad Alam.

John Pennington
© Cricket World 2008

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