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Kerala Kaumudi Online
Wednesday, 16 October 2019 6.13 AM IST

ICC CWC: India enter semis, pipping Bangladesh

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BIRMINGHAM: India, in a scintillating match, defeated Bangladesh to enter semi finals. The team won by 28 runs, when two overs were still to go. Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul played knocks of 104 and 77 runs respectively to allow India to post a score of 314 runs for the loss of nine wickets in the allotted fifty overs against Bangladesh in the ongoing ICC Men's Cricket World Cup.

After opting to bat first, openers Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul provided an exceptional start to India. The duo mixed caution with aggression, but once both the batsmen got their eyes in, they started to hammer the Bangladesh bowlers to all around the park. Sharma was given a reprieve in the fifth over as he was dropped by Tamim Iqbal. Mustafizur Rahman bowled a short ball, Rohit looked to clear the short boundary, but he was not able to get the elevation. Tamim who was at deep square leg dropped the catch. Rahul and Sharma did not let any bowler settle at the crease. The duo went on to stitch a partnership of 180 runs, which saw both Sharma bringing up his century. Both these batsmen stitched the highest opening partnership in this World Cup so far.

Bangladesh finally got breakthrough in the 30th over as Sharma (104) was sent back to the pavilion by Soumya Sarkar. Rahul was dismissed soon after (77) by Rubel Hossain, reducing India to 195/2 in the 33rd over. Rishabh Pant and Virat Kohli got together at the crease and they did not let momentum slide away. Both batsmen played with an aggressive mindset and hammered the Bangladesh bowlers for regular boundaries. Pant and Kohli put up a 42-run stand, but their stint at the crease was cut short by Mustafizur Rahman as he dismissed Kohli (26). Hardik Pandya was sent back to the pavilion for a duck by Rahman, reducing India to 237/4 in the 40th over.

Dhoni joined Pant in the middle and they stitched together a 40-run stand, but Pant's stint at the crease finally came to an end as he was dismissed by Shakib Al Hasan for 48. Dinesh Karthik, who was playing his first World Cup match, failed to leave a mark as he dismissed for just 8 runs. Wicket-keeper batsman Dhoni once again failed to play with a healthy strike-rate in the death overs, and was finally dismissed in the final over after scoring 35 runs. Bangladesh kept on taking wickets at regular intervals and as a result, they restricted India to under 320-run mark. Sharma was the top-scorer for India as he played a knock of 104 runs whereas Bangladesh's Rahman scalped five wickets.

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