Colombo: Rohit Sharma’s batting woes finally came to an end as India outplayed Bangladesh by 17 runs in the Nidahas T20I tri-series at the R. Premadasa Stadium in Colombo on Wednesday.
Courtesy this win, India have now won all the seven T20Is they have played against Bangladesh and have also qualified for the final, to be played on Sunday.
India didn’t have much luck with the toss as they were put to bat by Bangladesh captain Mahmudullah Riyad but Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma got India off to a sedate start, scoring 49 runs in the first six overs. The duo went on to add 21 more before Rubel Hossain came into the act, sending back the in-form Dhawan for just 35 runs.
But a huge 102-run stand between Sharma and Suresh Raina ensured that India controlled the proceedings in the match. The duo took the steam out of the Bangladesh bowling and set their sights on posting a big total. Eventually they ended up on 176/3 courtesy an excellent final over bowled by Rubel, where both these batsmen perished in an attempt to end on a high.
Sharma also leapfrogged Yuvraj Singh to hit the most sixes for India in T20Is (75), en route to his 89 of 61 balls.
In reply, Bangladesh lost Liton Das as early as in the second over after Washington Sundar beat him in the flight, bowling a tossed-up delivery outside off-stump and Dinesh Karthik making no mistake behind the stumps.
Sundar once again came into the act as this time, his straight delivery crashed into the leg-stump after Soumya Sarkar offered to play a slog sweep and missed the ball completely. The youngster from Tamil Nadu also sent back the dangerous Tamim Iqbal for just 27 of 19 balls to hand India a firm grip on the match.
But it was a 65-run stand between Mushfiqur Rahim and Sabbir Rahman-Bangladesh’s best ever stand for the fifth wicket, that revived the men in green and brought them back into the game after Sundar’s magical spell had dented their chase.
Mushfiqur went on to score a valiant 72 of 55 balls-which is the first 50+ score by a Bangladeshi batsman against India in T20Is, but couldn’t take his team over the line as they fell short by 17 runs in the end.
Mohammad Siraj, who was included in the playing XI ahead of Jaydev Unadkat had a forgettable day as he was carted for 50 runs in his four overs which puts him in the second spot on a list of bowlers who have conceded the most number of runs after three T20Is (131).