ICC WT20: Slick India Too Strong For Brave Bangladesh

ICC WT20: Slick India Too Strong For Brave Bangladesh
ICC WT20: Slick India Too Strong For Brave Bangladesh
©Action Images / Andrew Boyers Livepic

India 180-5 (Gambhir 50, Yuvraj Singh 41) beat
Bangladesh 155-8 (Zunaed Siddique 41, Ojha 4-21) by 25 runs

ICC World Twenty20 Group A, Trent Bridge

India opened their 2009 ICC World Twenty20 tournament with a superb all-round performance to beat Bangladesh by 25 runs at Trent Bridge.

Gautam Gambhir stroked a fluent 50 before a blistering innings of 41 in 18 balls from Yuvraj Singh enabled them to post 180 for five before they restricted Bangladesh to 155 for eight.

Yuvraj Singh's innings, which included four towering sixes, was a shot in the arm for the Indian side, which after smooth progress from openers Rohit Sharma (36) and Gambhir, had stalled, with Mahendra Singh Dhoni struggling on his way to 26 in 21 balls.

Gambhir took full advantage of being dropped a couple of times early in his innings to hit four fours in his 46 balls but he was just as guilty of Dhoni of getting bogged down against the Bangladesh spinners, of whom Naeem Islam (2-32) was the most impressive, picking up the wickets of Gambhir and Dhoni.

Any thoughts Bangladesh had of restricting India to under 170 were blasted out of the window by Yuvraj before an unbeaten 11 in three balls from Irfan Pathan in the final over got India to the 180 mark and after that, they were never seriously headed.

Rubel Hossain, Shahadat Hossain and Shakib Al Hasan picked up a wicket apiece.

Bangladesh made the better start, Zunaed Siddique blasting 41 in 22 balls and Tamim Iqbal playing some typically enterprising strokes to make 15 in 10 balls before being stumped when Dhoni turned to Yusuf Pathan for the third over of the match.

Siddique hit three sixes before he holed out looking for a fourth to give Ojha, who had already dismissed Shakib with his first ball in Twenty20 International cricket, a second wicket.

The left-armer, later named man of the match for his performance, went on to have Mahmudullah (8) superbly caught by Yuvraj Singh at short fine leg and Mashrafe Mortaza (8) bowled. He picked up four for 21, benefitting as the pitch took turn more and more as the match went on.

Naeem Islam came in and thumped 28 in 17 balls at the death but by then the match was over as a contest and Yuvraj pulled off another athletic catch to get rid of him in the final over to give Ishant Sharma (2-34) his second wicket, coming after the tall pace man had dismissed Bangladesh captain Mohammad Ashraful for 11 early on.

© Cricket World 2009