Rohit, Sundar star as India storm into final
NIDAHAS TROPHY 2018Rohit, Sundar star as India storm into finalCricbuzz Staff â¢ Sundar picked up three wickets in the PowerPlay to cripple Bangladesh's chase. Â© AFP
Rohit Sharma had digressed a fair bit at the toss when he was asked about the changes made to the Indian side on Wednesday (March 14). "No concerns about my own form. Spending more time is important; not playing too many shots early on. For me, the team performance matters the most," said Rohit, before having to be re minded of mentioning the changes.
True to his word, he didn't play too many shots at the start in the fifth game of the Nidahas Trophy 2018 against Bangladesh, taking his time to settle in at the R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo. The result of that though, was Sharma finishing 11 short of a century as he led his side to 176 for 3 - which proved to be enough as Bangladesh were restricted to 159 for 6. India sealed their spot in the final with a 17-run win, and extended their unbeaten streak in the format against Bangladesh to seven games.
Rohit was handed a life, albeit off a very tough chance, in the third over when on 7, after Abu Hider at mid-on couldn't time his div. The in-form Shikhar Dhawan, on the other hand, played his strokes and took on the bowlers, keeping the scoreboard ticking, while Rohit continued to find his feet. The Indian captain was 10 off 15 before Mehidy Hasan was dispatched over the deep mid-wicket ropes as he started to loosen up even with the ball gripping with a bit of turn, making it tough for the batsmen to play their shots. Dhawan, meanwhile, was dropped by Liton Das as India's opening pair brought up the fifty-run stand in the seventh over.
Dhawan, however, fell at the halfway stage after his middle stump was uprooted by an outswinging yorker from Rubel Hossain. Suresh Raina joined Rohit for a quickfire stand which fetched India 102 runs before the former fell for a brilliant 47 off 30. During the course of the stand though, Rohit had found his feet and let loose, smashing five sixes and as many fours in his 61-ball stay in the middle that fetched him 89, returning to form that had eluded him all series. Despite his brilliance, India would've felt they were 15 short at least after.
However, Bangladesh were undone upfront by an excellent spell from Washington Sundar. In the PowerPlay, he gave away 18 runs in three overs, striking in each of them to send back Bangladesh's top or der with some sharp bowling at the stumps. With their backs against the wall, Mushfiqur Rahim and Sabbir Rahman came together to defy the Indian bowlers' attack with a very astute partnership with excellent match awareness to breathe life back into Bangladesh's chase.
The Indian bowlers took the pace off, bowling at different lines and lengths to force Bangladesh's batsmen to think on their feet. The fifth-wicket stand fetched Bangladesh 65 off 48 balls before Sabbir was castled after missing a slower ball from Shardul Thakur, who was taken apart for 19 by Tamim Iqbal (27) in his opening over. Thakur, though, came back strongly to first, end the vital stand that kept Bangladesh in the chase, and then bowled a stellar penultimate over studded with knuckle balls, conceding only five runs, leaving Bangladesh with 28 to get in the last.
Mushfiqur scored his second half-century on the trot, and kept Bangladesh in the game until the end. In what was another forgettable day for Mohammad Siraj, he gave away 50 from four overs, conceding the most runs after three T20Is (131). He bowled the final over in which he gave away 10 runs, even as Mushfiqur fought right until the end remaining unbeaten on 72 off 55 balls - the first-ever fifty by a Bangladesh batsman against India in T20Is.
Brief scores: India 176/3 in 20 overs (Rohit Sharma 89, Shikhar Dhawan 35, Suresh Raina 47; Rubel Hossain 2-27) beat Bangladesh 159/6 in 20 overs (Mushfiqur Rahim 72*, Sabbir Rahman 27; Washington Sundar 3-22) by 17 runs.Â© Cricbuzz TAGS