India banked on a clinical effort to keep their winning record against Pakistan intact beating arch-rivals by 89 runs in a rain-marred encounter at the Old Trafford in Manchester. Speaking at the end of the game, Rohit Sharma seemed content with how the whole stepped up to deliver at the biggest stage.
Happy with the team’s performance: Rohit
Chasing a mammoth total, World Cup debutant Vijay Shankar struck in the fourth over after Bhuvneshwar Kumar left the field with a hamstring pull. Since then, Fakar Zaman and Babar Azam added 104 runs for the second wicket before Kuldeep Yadav bamboozled Babar with a perfect leg-break. This opened the gates as Kuldeep chipped in with one more before Hardik Pandya’s back to back wicket left Pakistan strangled at 129 for five.
The onus was on skipper Sarfraz Ahmed to lead the team to a respectable total. However, he looked completely out of touch before Vijay Shankar removed him to claim his second as the rain came pouring down. The revised target said Pakistan needed 136 runs from 30 balls which looked completely impossible for the Men in Greens. Imad Wasim played a late cameo but it was not enough for Pakistan to secure a win.
Rohit leads the charge with the bat
Batting first, India posted 336 runs with a century from Rohit Sharma and fifties from skipper Virat Kohli and KL Rahul. Rohit long with his new opening partner, Rahul got India off to a flying start adding 136 runs for the first wicket. Both dominated the game right from the start taking on the Pakistan bowlers. While Rahul was a bit cautious, Rohit was fluent considering that he came to the game on the back of a century and a fifty.
Although Rahul departed soon after reaching his fifty, Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli marched on to take the score over 350+. The Mumbai batsman scored his second half-century of the World Cup before Virat Kohli took over the scheme of things. But Pakistan brought things back banking on Mohammad Amir’s three-wicket haul to restrict India to 336 uns.
Meanwhile, the target seemed too much for Pakistan as India sealed the tie by 89 runs. As a result, the Men in Blues kept the winning run going against Pakistan in the World Cups Speaking at the end of the game, Rohit Sharma said that they are happy with how they have played in this game.
“Happy with the way we played as a team. We know at times, it can get frustrating having lost out in the previous game. We had the intent of playing a solid game today,” Rohit said.
Speaking on his missed double-hundred, Rohit Sharma admitted that he was unhappy with the shot he played at that time. He also said that it was important to score as many as runs possible when it is coming and let that go at a crucial position.
“I was unhappy (when I got out), particularly the way I played that shot. He just pushed mid-on back and brought fine leg in, a little misjudgment from my side. When you’re set you want to get as many runs as possible. Got out at the wrong time, the partnership was becoming solid and we wanted to kill the game,” he continued.
Rohit Sharma also heaped praise on KL Rahul. Although they took time at the start but eventually cut loose to set the platform for the batters to come and dominate the match later on. Rahul’s impressive batting covered up the absence of injured Shikhar Dhawan.
“Rahul played very well, took some time early on, probably what was required. Can’t play shots straightaway. The idea was to see what is happening,” Rohit concluded.