Wednesday, September 19, 2012

ICC- T.20. WC-2012. Match.3. Gr.A. India vs Afghanistan at Colombo

India beat Afghanistan by 23 runs in a Gr.A match played at Colombo. Afghans, won the toss and elected to field. Indians with a surprise eight batsmen eleven, were shaken by the spirited Afghans, losing Gambhir for 10 and Sehwag for eight in the fifth over. Shapoor Zadran was firing in all cylinders at this stage, picked up both the wickets.

Yuvraj joined Virat and added 46 runs in six overs, before he was snapped by Zadran of the bowling of Karim Sadiq for a well compiled 18 of 20 balls. Virat and Raina added 46 runs in five overs, before Virat was taken at long off for a well made 50 of 39 balls. Afghan fielding was shabby at this stage and both Virat and Raina were dropped of sitters. 

Dhoni and Raina batted sedately and India finished at a fighting 159 for 5 of 20, with Raina 38 of 33 and Dhoni clouting two fours and a six for an unbeaten 18 of 9 balls.

the Afghans kept the match alive till the eleventh over, Shahzad making 18 of 16, Nawroz Mangal making 22 of 19, and Karim Sadiq making 26 of 26. Yuvraj introduced during this stage, took 3 for 24 slowed  the Afghan charge. Ashwin 3 for 24 and Balaji 3 for 19 thereafter  reduced the Afghans to 136 all out in 19.3 overs.

The Sri Lankan wickets are not the place for Medium fast bowlers, and Zakhir and carted for 32  runs of 3 overs. Balaji was the most impressive medium pacer, bowling his slower in coming deliveries intelligently mixed with an odd chest high bouncers. But it was the spin combination of Yuvraj and Ashwin, which took India through.

India need to do a lot of homework in selecting the right eleven. Against England, playing Harbhajan in tandem with Ashwin keeping a batsman out of the eleven may be the right choice.

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