India vs Bangladesh | Rohit Sharma and Washington Sundar lead the charge as India book place in Nidahas Trophy final

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India vs Bangladesh | Rohit Sharma and Washington Sundar lead the charge as India book place in Nidahas Trophy final

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SportsCafe Desk

03/14/2018

While defending a target of 177, Washington Sundar (3/22) decimated the Bangladesh top order to guide India into the final of the Nidahas Trophy. Earlier, it was Rohit Sharma, who scored 89 off 61, was ably supported by Suresh Raina, 47 off 30, helped India put a very competitive 176 runs on board.

Bangladesh’s skipper Mahmudullah won the toss and invited India to bat first in the fifth T20I of the tri-series Nidahas Trophy. Both the teams made 1 change each, with Abu Hider coming in for Taskin, and Mohammed Siraj replacing Jaidev Unadkat.

India start slowly and steadily

After scoring two runs in the first over of the innings, Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit targeted Nazmul Islam in the second over and both openers got a boundary each. Rohit started in circumspect fashion, carefully building the partnership with Dhawan. The duo added 16 runs in the next two overs, before Rohit targeted Mehidy Hasan Miraz in the fifth over and scored a maximum on the way to India reaching 49 for no loss at the end of the powerplay. In the very next over, Dhawan offered Bangladesh a chance at his wicket, but he was dropped off Najmul Islam’s delivery. And Dhawan took advantage by hitting a couple of great shots, but the Tigers got some relief in the form of Islam, who conceded only 4 in the ninth over, before his team got the first breakthrough, as Rubel Hossain uprooted Dhawan’s stumps. India ended the first half of their innings at 71/1, with Dhawal back at the pavilion for 35.

Rohit and Raina unleash the fireworks

The Indian opener’s exit brought Suresh Raina to the centre at No. 3. Despite the fall of Dhawan’s wicket, Rohit continued adding runs and hit a six in the next over. The Mumbai batsman scored his first fifty in the series in the 13th over, which was also his 13th T20I half-century. In the very next over, Raina also started to assert his presence by trouncing Miraz for a boundary and a six. Rubel Hossain also felt the heat of Raina’s innings as he conceded 13 runs in the 15th over, and in the second delivery of Mahmudullah’s over, the duo reached their 50-run partnership. After grabbing 14 runs in that over, the batsmen unleashed a series of boundaries off Abu Hider, as he leaked 21 runs. In his effort to maximize the target, Raina slogged himself out in the final over, bowled by Rubel Hossain, and he was replaced by Dinesh Karthik. But neither he nor Sharma had an answer to Rubel’s yorkers and pace variations, and they were only able to add 4 runs between them before the skipper ran himself out on 89, with the scoreboard at 176/3.

Washington Sundar puts India in the driving seat

Chasing a target of 177 was never going to be an easy affair and realizing this, Tamim Iqbal took 8 runs off the first over and even though Sundar got rid of Liton Das in the second, the Bangladesh star thrashed Thakur for 19 in the next to keep his side on track. However, it was all undone as Washington Sundar got rid of not just Soumya Sarkar but Tamim as well to restrict the Tigers to just 48 runs by the end of the powerplay overs. Things did not get much better after the powerplay as India conceded just 16 runs in the next four overs, while claiming the wicket of Mahmudullah as well, to restrict the Bangladesh side to just 64 runs with half of their innings done.

Mushfiqur knock in vain as India book final berth

Realizing that they were well behind the required run rate, Mushfiqur Rahim led the charge by adding 40 runs to the total in just three overs. On seeing the spinners struggle, Rohit brought Thakur and Shankar back into the attack and it proved to be a match-changing decision. The duo gave away just 12 runs in the next two overs to take the required run rate past 12 runs. Knowing that one more good over would do the trick, Rohit handed the ball to his best bowler, Sundar, who gave away just 4 runs to put an end to the Bangladesh challenge. Even though Bangladesh scored 16 runs off the 18th over, it proved to be inconsequential as they fell 17 runs short at the end.

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