ICC Cricket World Cup, 2019
Venue: Old Trafford, Manchester
Date & Time: 16 June 2019
RR: 5.3 | India beat Pakistan by 89 runs (D/L method)
Whoosh! Another India-Pakistan clash ends in a forgetful manner. No competition from the Men In Green at all. India move to third while Pakistan are on 7th. Will a different Team In Green have a better outing on a different day? Come Monday, June 17, 2019, Bangladesh take on West Indies in Taunton. Hopefully, we will get a better contest. ADIOS! TAKE CARE!
Victorious Indian captain, Virat Kohli, says that the pitch did not make too much of a difference throughout, except for the turn. Bides by his original decision to bowl first purely because of the overcast conditions. Is proud of the templates set by the team in each of the three wins with the batting laying the foundation and the bowlers doing their stuff. Feels that everyone is playing their roles perfectly. On Kuldeep Yadav's two wickets, breaking the century stand, Kohli says that Kuldeep was getting into rhythm with every ball that he bowled and a longer spell helped him. Calls the Babar dismissal a beauty with plenty of drift and turn. On India-Pakistan rivalries becoming a damp squib, Virat says that Pakistan beat India comprehensively in the 2017 Champions Trophy final but other than that, India have always done well against them. Urges fans to watch the game, enjoy but not be too emotional. Stresses that the players treat the contest professionally. On Bhuvneshwar Kumar's injury, Kohli says that it is a slight niggle caused due to improper landing, but is nothing too serious and is hopeful of getting well soon.
Pakistan skipper, Sarfaraz Ahmed, says that they won a good toss but could not put the ball in the right areas and praises Rohit Sharma for playing really well. On the logic behind picking two spinners, Ahmed says that there was some moisture on the wicket and the ball was turning as well and Pakistan's spinners did bowl nicely but credits India for batting better. With the bat, Sarfaraz says that Pakistan were going well with the bat but suddenly they lost a flurry of wickets and lost the game. Hopes to win all their remaining four games and bounce back.
ROHIT SHARMA HAS BEEN NAMED THE MAN OF THE MATCH. Rohit says that he is happy with the way India played as a team. Adds they wanted to get on the park and play the game of cricket. Mentions that it was frustrating that their last match got washed out. On his disappointment after getting out, Rohit replies that he wasn't happy with the way he played that shot and feels it was a misjudgement from his side as fine leg was brought up just before that ball (He got out caught at short fine leg attempting a paddle). Tells that it was a good pitch and he wanted to bat for as long as possible. Praises KL Rahul for playing really well and is happy that he took his time to settle down. Further says that they knew the opening spell was going to be threatening and their idea was to play those initial overs safely.
Nothing much to mention for Pakistan in terms of their batting. For the second successive game, they have collapsed from a good position. For India, they have shown their reserve strength, not only with the bat but also with the ball. Kuldeep Yadav showed that he has not lost his form and can pose a threat to any opposition. Please stay tuned for the presentation.
Towards the end, the match became more of a farce, as people were only waiting for the torture to end. The rain came again and this time, one felt for good, with Pakistan lagging behind by 86 runs in the DLS method. However, just like the 2007 final, the umpires decided to have play again and the revised target was 302 in 40 overs, which meant Pakistan needed an almost impossible 136 from 5 overs.
During the chase, before Pakistan could suffer a blow, India suffered a blow as they lost their key bowler, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, to injury. But Vijay Shankar coming in to complete Bhuvi's unfinished over struck gold on the very first ball and claimed the prized scalp of in-form Imam-ul-Haq. Post that, a century stand developed between Fakhar Zaman and Babar Azam but as the saying goes, 'one swallow doesn't make a summer'. The 104-run stand was followed by the complete disintegration of the Pakistan batting line-up. A magical ball from Kuldeep Yadav sent Babar Azam back and as it happens usually, more so with Pakistan, one wicket brought another and soon it was a procession.
In a pressure match, (what pressure match? Ind-Pak matches rarely induce pressure these days) India were forced to use a different opening batsman to replace Shikhar Dhawan. They trusted KL Rahul to do the job and the young man didn't disappoint as he was involved in India's maiden century partnership for the first wicket against Pakistan in all World Cups. After a solid beginning, Rohit Sharma took it forward and hammered a big century and his skipper Virat Kohli also contributed with a fine half century which also made him the fastest batsman to the 11k milestone in ODIs. A powerful batting show powered the Men in Blue to a total of 336/5 in 50 overs and from thereon they were in front.
Done and dusted. Or shall we say squashed and swatted? The day started with one question - Will it rain or will India continue their reign? The answer is - India have made it 7 in 7 against Pakistan in ICC ODI World Cups. They have given a real beating to their arch-rivals and have solidified their position in the points table. Their invincible run continues while Pakistan are in the doldrums, just over Afghanistan.
Free Hit time!
Jasprit Bumrah comes back into the attack. He has two overs left.
The Indian players are striding out in the centre. Yuzvendra Chahal to bowl. The umpire has signalled the start of Powerplay 3. A slip in place.
Update 1854 local (1754 GMT) - Good news! The rain has stopped and the covers are coming off. Play to resume at 1910 local and it's reduced to 40 overs. The new target is 302 for Pakistan which means they will need 136 runs in 30 balls. Facepalm.
Update 1843 local (1743 GMT) - The drizzle is still on. The officials are spotted under their umbrellas having a chat. The covers are on. We are hearing that the cut-off time for this match is 1915 local. Let's hope for the best.
DRIZZLING! The players are leaving the field. The groundsmen run in with the hover cover. Pakistan are 86 runs behind the DLS par score at this stage. A commanding performance by India so far and they would like to return on the field to take the remaining wickets and make this victory even sweeter. For Pakistan, this loss will hurt their NRR badly. Another dismal performance against their arch-rivals at the grand stage. Let's hope for the resumption soon. Stay tuned for more updates...
Shadab Khan is in next.
Drinks break. It's India and India all the way! The century stand between Fakhar Zaman and Babar Azam was the only bright spot for Pakistan as the wickets fell in a heap after that. Kuldeep Yadav has been exceptional in his spell and his magic delivery to dismiss Babar Azam opened the floodgates for India. A really smooth going for them and they are almost looking certain to maintain their dominance over Pakistan in the ICC World Cup. Meanwhile, Vijay Shankar is back into the attack...
Jasprit Bumrah is back into the attack, replacing Kuldeep. His four overs have gone for just 15 runs. Effective as usual and he is the last bowler you want to face when the RRR is over 10.
Slight change in field. There is a fielder placed somewhere near gully.
Imad Wasim is in next.
Shoaib Malik is the new man in. Pakistan losing their way quickly now.
Bowling change. Hardik Pandya is back into the attack. Pakistan are 41 runs behind in the DLS par score at the moment.
Sarfaraz Ahmed walks in next. A leg slip in place.
Time for Mohammad Hafeez to use his willow. Professor from Sargodha has been in decent form in this World Cup with scores of 84 and 46 under his belt. His experience will be needed here in this big run chase.
An update regarding ball number 18.5. Replays show that the ball hit the pad first and then the bat hit the pad. That would have smashed into the stumps. So if the review had been taken, Azam would have been gone.
Babar Azam pulls out. There is some plastic material that has come out on the pitch. Azam collects it and hands it over to the umpire.
Is that a stumping? Looks like lightning-quick Dhoni has caught Fakhar Zaman off guard. Zaman looked to drive but lost his balance slightly. Replays seem to point to the foot to be coming back in...
Kuldeep Yadav is back on.
The leggie is on! Yuzvendra Chahal to bowl with a slip in place.
DRINKS BREAK. It's been a quiet going from Pakistan in this run chase. Fakhar Zaman has not been at his fluent best and losing Imam early has hurt them. Babar Azam has looked unfazed so far but now this pair needs to score at a better pace. The RRR is closing in on 8 and it's not going to be easy to keep up with it in the middle phase. India have done well in spite of losing Bhuvneshwar Kumar to injury. They would like to maintain the same intensity and make their rivals sweat hard for every run.
Here comes the much-awaited news on Bhuvneshwar Kumar! He has tightness in left hamstring and will not return to the field for the remainder of the match. So far, his absence has not been felt by the Men in Blue much but if this chase gets close, then he will be missed big time.
Bowling change. Hardik Pandya to have another go but from the different end. He and Shankar have done a decent job so far.
Time for some spin! Here comes Kuldeep Yadav to bowl some Chinaman deliveries. A slip in place.
Powerplay 2 begins. Now, India can put a maximum of 4 fielders outside the ring till the 40th over.
Is it only me or does someone else also feel that Babar Azam looks like Kamran Akmal while batting? He has got a good technique, no doubt, but that back foot opening stance, his front foot cover drive and his yells of no and wait remind us of the former keeper a lot. Okay. Remind me a lot.
Change of ends for Vijay Shankar. India will be feeling lucky that they have gone with Shankar for this game and not Dinesh Karthik. With Bhuvneshwar injured, Shankar can contribute a few vital overs here.
Hardik Pandya is into the attack now.
We are still waiting for some news on Bhuvneshwar's injury. The whole of India will be praying that he is fit and there is no serious injury concern with him.
India are clearly rushing through their overs. It has gone pretty dark again and an interruption may not be far away. Meanwhile, Ravindra Jadeja is on the field as a substitute for Bhuvneshwar Kumar. The camera pans onto the Indian balcony where there is a massive discussion going on with some concern writ on the people's faces.
Some sawdust is applied on the bowler's landing area. India don't want any more injuries here.
Babar Azam walks in at number 3, replacing Imam. Three 50-plus scores in his last 5 innings in ODIs.
Oh dear. Bhuvi is going off the field. He does not seem to be in too much discomfort but perhaps is taking the right call to have it checked, just in case it worsens. Vijay Shankar to bowl the pending over.
Rohit Sharma from the slip cordon is asking Bhuvi to pitch it much fuller. With the ball moving around so much, that length might be more ideal. Meanwhile, we are having a small delay. Bhuvneshwar Kumar slipped while landing on the front foot and might have hurt his hamstring slightly. Umpire Bruce Oxenford indicates to the ground staff to bring on the hammer.
There seems to be much more lateral movement off the deck, than the morning. The balls are pitching and then shooting off.
Predicto Praky - This is interesting. Bhuvneshwar Kumar is bowling quicker than Jasprit Bumrah. Bhuvi is consistently in the high 140s while Bumrah is operating in the high 135s. Normally, it is the other way round.
That is the thing with Bumrah. No two balls are the same. He bowls with a shortened runup but generates excellent pace.
Jasprit Bumrah to bowl with the second new ball. Two slips in place for him as well.
The players are making their way back out to the middle. They had barely gone out. In fact, the Indians were in a huddle even when the hover cover was on. Imam-ul-Haq and Fakhar Zaman had just gone beyond the boundary and walk back again. Bhuvneshwar Kumar will start off proceedings with the first new ball. Imam to face. Kohli, Dhoni and Rohit in a brief chat.