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Kohli, Rahul Shine as India Down Pakistan in Asia Cup

Kohli, Rahul Shine as India Down Pakistan in Asia Cup

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India delivered an exceptional performance against the top-ranked ODI team, securing an incredible 228-run victory in a rain-affected match that spanned Sunday and Monday in Colombo. Virat Kohli both scored centuries, and India’s fast bowlers created immense pressure on Pakistan’s top-order. Kuldeep Yadav’s five-wicket haul sealed the comprehensive win, marking India’s largest ODI victory over Pakistan in terms of runs.

The second day of the match witnessed Rahul and Kohli achieving centuries and establishing the highest ODI partnership for India against Pakistan, worth 233 runs. This partnership added to Pakistan’s difficulties, as they had to cope without bowler Haris Rauf due to an inflammation in his oblique muscle.

With Haris Rauf unavailable, Pakistan turned to Iftikhar Ahmed’s part-time spin to cover his overs, and Rahul and Kohli capitalized on this situation. None of the Pakistan bowlers managed to break the partnership, and as the innings progressed, Rahul and Kohli began to score more freely. They added 92 runs in the final eight overs, propelling India to a massive total of 356/2 in 50 overs.

Following a dominant batting display, India’s pace bowlers took center stage. Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Siraj troubled the Pakistani openers with their ability to make the ball move both ways. Pakistan captain Babar Azam, currently the world’s top-ranked ODI batsman, struggled against Bumrah’s deliveries that swung away and repeatedly beat the outside edge.


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In the fifth over, Imam-Ul-Haq was dismissed, attempting to play a ball from Bumrah that straightened instead of moving inward. Fakhar Zaman faced similar difficulties against Mohammed Siraj, who alternated deliveries across the left-hander and those that held the middle-stump line.

Babar Azam, after enduring two fiery five-over spells from Bumrah and Siraj, was dismissed by a sharp in-swinging delivery from Hardik Pandya. Pandya’s delivery darted in sharply, leaving Babar completely baffled and hitting the stumps.

Rain interrupted play after the 11th over but did not result in a loss of overs. India maintained their dominance when play resumed. Shardul Thakur replicated Pandya’s success by dismissing Mohammad Rizwan, who nicked the ball to KL Rahul, taking over the wicketkeeping duties from Ishan Kishan.

Kuldeep Yadav then took control, claiming crucial wickets. He bowled Fakhar Zaman, induced Agha Salman into a leg-before-wicket dismissal, and had Shadab Khan caught at long-on. Kuldeep’s fourth wicket came when Iftikhar Ahmed hit a loose delivery back to the bowler. He completed his five-wicket haul by dismissing Faheem Ashraf.

Pakistan’s chase ended at 128 for 8 in 32 overs as Haris Rauf and Naseem Shah had sustained injuries during India’s innings and did not come out to bat.

In the Super Four round of the tournament, India, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka each have one win. India currently holds the top position in the standings due to their superior net run rate. Bangladesh is the fourth team in the group and has suffered losses in two matches.

Final Scores:

India: 356/2 in 50 overs (Virat Kohli 122*, KL Rahul 111*, Shubman Gill 58, Rohit Sharma 56; Shaheen Afridi 1-79, Shadab Khan 1-71)
Pakistan: 128 in 32 overs (Fakhar Zaman 27; Kuldeep Yadav 5-25)
India won by 228 runs


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