India's K L Rahul, centre, is congratulated by teammates after running out Bangladesh's Litton Das during their T20 World Cup match in Adelaide, Australia on Wednesday, November 2, 2022.
India's K L Rahul, centre, is congratulated by teammates after running out Bangladesh's Litton Das during their T20 World Cup match in Adelaide, Australia on Wednesday, November 2, 2022. (Photo:IANS)

T20 World Cup: India jump to top of Group 2 table with tense five-run win over Bangladesh

Adelaide, November 2, 2022

India survived a Litton Das scare and rain interruption to go on top of the Group 2 table with a tense five-run win over Bangladesh in their Super 12 match of Men's T20 World Cup at the Adelaide Oval on Wednesday.

After fifties from KL Rahul and Virat Kohli (64 not out) took India to a massive 184/6 in 20 overs, Bangladesh seemed to be cruising to the target with Das making a stunning 27-ball 60 as they reached 66 for no loss in the first seven overs.

But rain changed the equation to 151 in 16 overs. The rain interruption worked well in India's favour as Rahul's brilliant run-out of Das post the break triggered a Bangladesh meltdown as they could make only 79 runs in the remaining nine overs, losing six wickets.

For India, Arshdeep Singh and Hardik Pandya took two wickets each and Mohammed Shami had a scalp to his name while fielders took the catches well to keep the side on track for a spot in the semi-finals.

Liton's onslaught began with a sliced four past backward point off Arshdeep first ball of the match. He took two more fours off the left-arm pacer in the second over via drives down the ground and through cover.

He then tore into Bhuvneshwar Kumar, pulling him for a six over deep mid-wicket before taking consecutive fours through off-side. Das brought out the shot of Bangladesh's innings when he scooped a six over his shoulder off Bhuvneshwar in the fifth over.

Shami was the next Indian bowler to be taken to the cleaners, as Das heaved him over backward square leg for four. He brought up the fifty in 21 balls with a top-edge on the pull going over deep square leg fence and followed up with an inside-out loft over extra cover for second four in the final over of power-play.

When rain forced teams off the field, Bangladesh were 66/0 in seven overs, well ahead of the DLS par score of 49. As play resumed after 50 minutes of rain, India found immediate success as Rahul's smooth direct hit from deep mid-wicket caught Das short of his crease at the non-striker's end.

Shanto hit a brace of boundaries, but holed out to long-on off Shami. Arshdeep made a double strike as Afif Hossain miscued a slog to mid-on running in from the deep and Shakib Al Hasan fell in similar fashion while trying to clear the short boundary.

Wickets continued to tumble for Bangladesh as a top-edge on Yasir Ali's pull off Hardik Pandya was sliced to point and Mosaddek Hossain chopped on to his stumps. Though Nurul Hasan and Taskin Ahmed hit six boundaries in the last three overs, including two in the final over, India managed to hold their nerve for a tight win.

Earlier, Kohli celebrated his record of being the leading run-getter in T20 World Cups with an unbeaten 64 off 44 balls, while Rahul shrugged off his lean run with a 32-ball 50 in guiding India to a massive 184/6.

On a pitch where bowlers found spongy bounce and swing, Rahul was elegant in his stroke-play, hitting three fours and four sixes at a strike-rate of 156.25 to come back into form.

He also shared a 67-run stand off 37 balls for the second wicket with Kohli, who continued his sizzling touch in the tournament by hitting eight fours and a six at a strike-rate of 145.45.

The duo were also supported by wristy strokeplay of new top-ranked T20I batter Suryakumar Yadav's 16-ball 30 and Ravichandran Ashwin hitting a cameo of 13 not out.

For Bangladesh, pacer Hasan Mahmud took three wickets for 47 runs while captain Shakib Al Hasan took two wickets for 33 runs in their respective four overs.

Pushed into batting first, Rahul straightaway did not look in great touch, playing and missing a couple of deliveries in the first two overs. But an impressive pick-up shot into the deep square leg fence off Shoriful Islam for six got Rahul going.

Though Sharma cut uppishly straight to gully off Hasan Mahmud just an over after the pacer dropped the Indian skipper at fine leg, Rahul was unperturbed in attacking the bowler.

He slashed him over third man for four and then produced the shot of the innings, a fantastically-timed square cut, going flat over cover point for six.

From the other end, Kohli looked to take on Taskin Ahmed by getting successive boundaries off outer edges flying past cover and slip fielders. After Kohli and Rahul took a four each off Mustafizur Rahman and Shakib Al Hasan, the duo then took 24 runs off Shoriful in the ninth over.

Kohli kick-started the over with a gorgeous straight drive for four, before Rahul stood tall to dispatch a length ball, called a no-ball, over long-on for six. On the next legal ball, he sliced high over deep point for six, before going deep in the crease to slash past point for four.

Rahul would go on to get his fifty in 31 balls, but he fell in an attempt to lap off Shakib in the 10th over, as short fine leg took a simple catch.

Suryakumar got off the mark by flaying a cut over point off Shakib and tore into Mahmud in the 13th over, lofting drives over extra cover twice, before slicing a drive through backward point for three fours in a 14-run over.

His sparkling knock was cut short by Shakib, who bowled a slower ball on length in the 14th over, which Suryakumar tried to cut, but missed it and saw his stumps rattled. Kohli maintained the tempo by hitting Rahman for successive fours in the end of the 15th over.

Kohli marched forward to get his third fifty of the tournament in 37 balls, despite running out of partners from the other end. Hardik Pandya picked out backward point, Dinesh Karthik was run-out, and Axar Patel chipped a catch to cover.

Against Mahmud in the 19th over, Kohli swivelled off his wrists to hit a four over deep square leg, and ended the over with a magical six coming off the straight bat lofted down the ground. In the final over, Ashwin pulled Shoriful over deep square leg for six and drilled a clean drive past mid-off as 27 runs came in the last two overs.

Brief Scores: India 184/6 in 20 overs (Virat Kohli 64 not out, KL Rahul 50; Hasan Mahmud 3/47, Shakib Al Hasan 2/33) beat Bangladesh 145/6 in 16 overs (Litton Das 60, Nurul Hasan 25 not out; Hardik Pandya 2/28, Arshdeep Singh 2/38) by 5 runs (via DLS method)

NNN

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