Bowled Over – India level T20 Series – By Luqman Liaqat

India overcame a masterclass batting effort from Mohammed Hafeez to win by 11 runs and level the two match Twenty20 series.

The hosts posted a massive 192-5 from their 20 overs with stand-out performer Yuvraj Singh who smashed his 72 runs from only 36 balls including seven sixes.

The chase from Pakistan began brightly; Hafeez’s effortless wristwork meant he cleared the rope with ease as he tormented the Indian bowlers.

However, Pakistan were left 11 runs short in the end with Ashok Dinda claiming figures of 3-36.

Ajinkiya Rahane scored 28 and Ghautam Ghambhir assisted well with 21 as the Indian openers put on a strong 44 run stand, Umar Gul accounted for the dismissal of both men.

Virat Kohli made a steady 27 before being run out from a Saeed Ajmal direct hit, but Yuvraj was in destructive mood when he was joined by MS Dhoni.

Yuvraj was struck on the toe with a painful blow from Mohammed Irfan’s yorker early in his innings but he recovered well and looked in stride, striking the ball clean with a lovely flourish.

He hit seven sixes and four boundaries, Shahid Afridi and Ajmal were hit for maximums. Sohail Tanvir felt the force being hammered for two huge blows off consecutive deliveries.

In the penultimate over, Yuvraj fired three consecutive sixes with the last one smacked over long-on. He eventually held out in Gul’s over ending the pairs partnership of 97 off 44 balls and in the same over MS Dhoni fell, as Gul completed his four overs with superb figures of 4-37.

Pakistan began chasing the huge total of 192 confidently; Nasir Jamshed and Ahmed Shehzad took on the seamers by laying a solid foundation with 74 runs in 9.4 overs before Jamshed fell to Ravi Ashwin for 41.

Shehzad followed being stumped off Yuvraj but Hafeez quickly altered the momentum with the game moving into the final overs. Hafeez faced 26 deliveries as he struck six boundaries and three maximums.

A slower ball from Ashoke Dinda bowled Umar Akmal ending a 62-run stand. With the required run rate increasing, Hafeez guided Yuvraj past point for four, before depositing Ashwin for two straight sixes over midwicket before paddling Dinda for two successive fours.

Dinda finally had Hafeez and Kamran Akmal as they both held out in the deep during the penultimate over.

Bhuvneshwar Kumar saw off Afridi, who had earlier in the over smashed him for a huge six.

Pakistan required 20 from the last over, which turned out to be too much for Shoaib Malik who couldn’t repeat his heroics from Tuesday and Umar Gul despite his boundary.

The reply from the team in green foundered to 181-7 as the series ended on level terms.

If the two rivals put on a show equivalent to this in the one-day format we could be in for a thriller of a series, which begins on Sunday at Chennai.

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One thought on “Bowled Over – India level T20 Series – By Luqman Liaqat

  1. Raja Rashid M khan says:

    nice

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