An India-Pakistan final, it is
Rohit Sharma (123 off 129) struck a cracking century against Bangladesh to power India into in the Champions Trophy final, where they will face arch-rivals Pakistan on Sunday. India cantered to the win in a lopsided second semifinal at the Edgbaston Stadium here on Thursday.
Birmingham: Rohit Sharma (123 off 129) struck a cracking century against Bangladesh to power India into in the Champions Trophy final, where they will face arch-rivals Pakistan on Sunday. India cantered to the win in a lopsided second semifinal at the Edgbaston Stadium here on Thursday.
Chasing 265 to win after electing to field first, the defending champions did not flinch for one moment as Rohit Sharma scored his 11th career ton (123 not out) and captain Virat Kohli notched up his 42nd fifty (96 not out) to stitch up an unbeaten 178-run partnership for the second wicket.
Kohli, in the process, became the fastest cricketer in the world to reach 8,000 runs in ODIs in just 175 innings.The in-form southpaw Shikhar Dhawan continued from where he had left against South Africa with a quickfire (46; 34b; 7x4, 1x6) before getting out to Bangladesh skipper Mashrafe Mortaza. India won the match with 59 balls to spare.
Earlier, riding on fluent half centuries from opener Tamim Iqbal and stumper Mushfiqur Rahim, Bangladesh posted 264/7.Tamim (70) and Mushfiqur (61) posted a 123-run third-wicket partnership to steady the Bangladesh ship after the tigers were reduced to 36/2.
Pacers Bhuvneshwar Kumar (2/53) and Jasprit Bumrah (2/40) maintained a strict line to halt Bangladesh's scoring rate.Part-time off-spinner Kedar Jadhav's 'golden arm' provided decisive twin blows. His 2/22 in six overs brought India back into the game as he took the crucial wickets of Tamim Iqbal (70) and Mushfiqur Rahim (61) with his fastish off-breaks.
The two wickets proved to be the difference between Bangladesh only managing 264 instead of a projected 310 after Tamim and Rahim had added 123 runs for the second wicket in only 21.1 overs. Once Kedar was done with his job, Jasprit Bumrah (2/40 in 10 overs) played his regular part to perfection stifling the opposition with as many as 40 dot balls.The third Powerplay (41-50) saw Bangladesh scoring only 62 runs primarily due to a cameo from skipper Mashrafe Mortaza (30no off 25 balls).