India vs Bangladesh | India secure title after beating Bangladesh in thrilling Nidahas finale

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India vs Bangladesh | India secure title after beating Bangladesh in thrilling Nidahas finale

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SportsCafe Desk

03/18/2018

Late-order fireworks by Dinesh Karthik, 29 of 8 balls, and top-order batting display by Rohit Sharma resulted in India securing a thrilling 4-wicket over Bangladesh. The Shakib al Hasan-led team, batting first, managed to put up a competitive score of 166 runs thanks to Sabbir Rahman 77.

Brief Scores : Bangladesh 166/8 (Sabbir Rahman 77, Mahmudullah 21; Yuzvendra Chahal 3/18, Jaydev Unadkat 2/33) lost to India (Rohit Sharma 56, Dinesh Karthik 29*; Rubel Hossain 2/35, Mustafizur Rahman 1/21) by 4 wickets.

While conventional wisdom dictates that batting first is always a better option in any pressure game, Indian skipper Rohit Sharma, observing the trend in the series, decided to bowl first and brought in Jaydev Unadkat to replace Mohammed Siraj in the team. On the other hand, Bangladesh skipper Shakib al Hasan, who fielded an unchanged XI, stated that he would have batted first anyway. 

Indian spinners seize initiative with quick wickets

Staying true to the skipper’s perception of slow wicket in the beginning, Unadkat bowled with panache and kept bowling short of length balls to which the Bangla opening duo of Tamim Iqbal and Liton Das couldn’t easily pick up and their struggle grew manifold when Washington Sundar bowled yet another economical over in the powerplay. However, for reasons only known to him, the left-arm pacer decided to go round the wicket to the left-handed Iqbal and the latter was happy to oblige him with a six. While that six would have brought a wry smile on the face of all Bangladeshi fans, that immediately nipped in the bud as Sundar and Yuzvendra Chahal joined hands to reduce the Asian minnows to 33/3 in five overs. The moment it seemed Bangladesh are slowly losing the plot Sabbir Rahman restored some parity by milking 14 runs in an over off Vijay Shankar. However, Chahal, on the other hand, kept threatening the batsmen and conceded only 14 runs off the first three overs. Sundar, too, didn’t lay too far behind as he gave away only five runs in his third over as Bangladesh were restricted to 68/3 at the half-way mark of the innings. 

Sabbir Rahman special takes Bangladesh past 150

The stage was all set for India to wrap things up easily and Chahal increased that possibility by sending Rahim packing for 9. After a parsimonious over, however, India’s nightmare came true as Mahmudullah managed to score 10 runs off the next over to start what was an interesting passage of play for Bangladesh. The team managed to score runs on a consistent note and decided to bring a cautious approach to their arsenal. They didn’t play any rash shots and only waited for wide outside off-stump balls to hit behind the square. When Dinesh Karthik and Shankar joined hands to dismiss Mahmudullah, which can only be considered as a classic case of brainfade, when the team were on 104. The lower-middle order, however, made sure that there was a par total to make the tournament finale at least interesting, which had already lost its charisma due to the lack of context and star power in all three teams. Bangladesh continued their carnage in the last overs and the twin dismissal by Unadkat in a single over didn’t help the cause the matter either. The team, which managed to beat Sri Lanka in a dramatic match two days ago, romped past the 150-run mark and gave India a target of 167 runs to chase down - much more than they would have expected after first five overs. 

Savage Rohit keeps India in chase

India needed a good start from their openers to be able to chase down the total and the abilities that Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma have, it was going to be nothing but a cake walk. The duo also lived up to the expectations as they scored 21 runs in a single over to give India a dream start to the innings. However, after one over of madness, Dhawan was sent packing as Shakib extracted a leading edge to get him out for 10 before Suresh Raina was out for a duck in the next over. But that didn’t mean that the floodgates were opened by then and Rohit kept on playing his attacking brand of game and found a perfect partner in the form of KL Rahul. The pair forged a 51-run partnership before Rahul gave a simple catch to Rahman to open a slender of hope to the Bangla Tigers as India were at 84/3 in 10 overs. 

Dinesh Karthik produces Dhoni-esque finish to win Nidahas Trophy

However, it was still India’s game to lose due to the presence of Rohit in the middle and Manish Pandey needed to get going so as to make sure that India didn’t lose the momentum. But, Pandey, like most times, failed to get off the blocks and couldn’t unleash fireworks which meant run-rate climbing up and quickly. Rohit also became a sedate run-getter and failed to clear the long-on boundary after scoring his half-century when India still needed 69 runs to win and the dismissal also brought Vijay Shankar to the crease. Shankar was also known to be a hard-hitter in the domestic arena and upon his first batting responsibility with the Indian colours, it was a chance for him to showcase his potential. But, the Tamil Nadu all-rounder failed to get going initially and to make matters worse, Pandey also failed to strike clean. The rookie was under pressure and couldn’t be able to touch any ball which meant Bangladesh had all but secured the title. Then came the moment no one was expecting for as Dinesh Karthik hit sixes for fun, taking 22 off the 19th over, to outdo MS Dhoni in being cool under pressure to give India a memorable victory with a six off the last ball of the tournament. 

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