Dominant India set up epic Pakistan decider

India, Bangladesh, Champions Trophy

A batting masterclass from Rohit Sharma (123*) and Virat Kohli (96*) helped the defending champions seal a 9 wicket win over Bangladesh at Edgbaston, and set up a summit clash against Pakistan on Sunday (June 18). It will be India’s fourth final in seven ICC tournaments since 2010.

Chasing a sub-par 265 for victory, India’s response was sublime; Rohit and Dhawan (46) combined for an 87-run opening stand to set the platform before skipper Kohli came to the party with his classy 96*. Dhawan reclaimed his number one position on the run-scoring charts from Tamim Iqbal, while Rohit moved to No. 2 with his fabulous century as India comfortably reached their target with nearly 10 overs to spare.

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Earlier, a solid 123-run union between opener Tamim Iqbal and keeper-batsman Mushfiqur Rahim steadied Bangladesh’s ship after the early loss of  Soumya Sarkar and Sabbir Rahman, who both fell to Bhuvneshwar Kumar (2-51). At 142-2 in 25 overs, The Tigers’ tally threatened to be comfortably in excess of 300, but three wickets in the space just 8 overs meant they could only manage 264 on a fresh Edgbaston surface — a total that proved far too insufficient in the end.

Jasprit Bhumrah returned figures of 2-39, while Kumar and Jadhav picked up 2 wickets each.

The kind of form that India’s powerful batting line-up is in sets up an exciting contest with Pakistan’s pace bowlers, who have been arguably the best bowling unit of the tournament.

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Match Summary:

India 265 for 1 (Rohit Sharma 123*, Virat Kohli 96*) beat Bangladesh 264 for 7 (Tamim Iqbal 70, Mushfiqur Rahim 61, Kedar Jadhav 2-22,  JaspritBumrah 2-40) by 9 wickets.

Captains’ Comments:

“Another complete game. We needed to have a clean, collective game. We didn’t expect to win by nine wickets, but that’s the quality of our top order. He’s not a surprise package (Kedar Jadhav), he’s a smart guy, he knows where to pitch the ball and see what the wicket is offering. it could have been close to 300. I wanted to give myself some time, 10-15 balls. Last time, we lost a wicket, so I had to adapt, I like those challenges. I grew in confidence. When you’re coming onto the short ball, you know you’re playing well. We’re taking it as any other game, I know that’s boring but that’s our mindset.” Virat Kohli, captain India, said.

“We could have scored 300, even 320, but our set batsmen getting out was a setback to us. Next time, we’ll come back strongly. We need to learn. Skill-wise we’re fine, but mentally we need to be stronger.” Mashrafe Mortaza, captain Bangladesh, said.

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