Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 12 November 2019

Rampant Rohit Sharma helps India level T20 series against Bangladesh in Rajkot

Captain misses century by 15 runs as India ease to eight wicket victory after spinners come to the fore

Rohit Sharma, right, missed out on a century in the second T20 against Bangladesh in Rajkot on Thursday. AFP
Rohit Sharma, right, missed out on a century in the second T20 against Bangladesh in Rajkot on Thursday. AFP

Up until Thursday morning, there was uncertainty over the match. Rajkot had been spared the worst of cyclone 'Maha' but enough rain had fallen overnight to flood the venue for the second T20 between India and Bangladesh.

But as match-time approached, all issues started to disappear and fans got to witness a full game. And what a game it was with India captain Rohit Sharma scoring a brilliant 85 in a dominating eight-wicket win.

After defeat in the Delhi T20, the hosts needed a strong reply and they did that through their spinners and captain to level the three-match series.

New spin twins

As was the case in the first T20, India's new spin twins Washington Sundar (1-25) and Yuzvendra Chahal (2-28) were the best Indian bowlers on display. Chahal could have had better figures had wicketkeeper Rishabh Pant timed his stumping of Liton Das better. The keeper was found to have collected the ball in front of the stumps, resulting in a no-ball which turned into two extra boundaries.

Seamer Khaleel Ahmed went for plenty again – 1-44 – which meant India had to chase Bangladesh's challenging total of 153-6.

Rohit goes berserk

The wicket had enough in it for the bowlers but Rohit was in a different sort of mood. Probably upset at how the Delhi T20 unfolded, Rohit attacked from the outset and looked to end the match in a hurry.

Rohit exploded in the 10th over when he hit three successive maximums off Mosaddek Hossain to bring up the team's century. An astonishing six sixes and as many fours during his 43-ball innings took India close to victory. While he missed out on a deserved century, Rohit showed other batsmen in the team how to bat with real intent.

India's Yuzvendra Chahal (L) and Khaleel Ahmed (C) celebrate with teammate Deepak Chahar (R) after he dismissed Bangladesh's Mahmud Ullah during the second T20 international cricket match of a three-match series between Bangladesh and India at Saurashtra Cricket Association Stadium in Rajkot on November 7, 2019. ----IMAGE RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - STRICTLY NO COMMERCIAL USE----- / AFP / Sajjad HUSSAIN / ----IMAGE RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - STRICTLY NO COMMERCIAL USE-----
Yuzvendra Chahal, left, had another fine day with the ball. AFP

Turning up the heat

After the match, spinner Chahal said the moment he started to bow, he realised there was spin on offer.

"When I bowled my first ball, I realised that it is spinning," Chahal said.

"You have to vary your pace here. When I was not part of the India team, I was practicing with the wet ball, so dew didn't affect me and I knew where to deliver the ball."

The leg-spinner said he did not look to much into the mistake made by Pant during Das' stumping and said that mistakes happen on the field.

"We are team players, even I drop catches sometimes. So no one wants to miss a catch or stumping, so no hard feelings. Just hard luck."

Updated: November 7, 2019 10:06 PM

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