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Asia Cup 2022, Super 4, Ind vs Pak: Lack of 6th bowler hurts India; Pakistan win by 5 wickets

Asia Cup 2022, Super 4, India vs Pakistan: Mohammad Rizwan's 71 off 51, Mohammad Nawaz's 42 & 1-25 and Virat Kohli's 60 off 44 are top three performances. Pakistan beat India by 5 wickets in Super 4.

Asia Cup 2022, Super 4, India vs Pakistan: Hardik Pandya leaked 44 runs in four overs for 1 wicket against Pakistan | Walking Wicket (Photo: ©BCCI/Twitter)
India missed 6th bowling option in Super 4 clash against Pakistan (Photo: ©BCCI/Twitter)

Brief Scores: Pakistan 182/5 (Mohammad Rizwan 71, Mohammad Nawaz 42, Ravi Bishnoi 1/26) beat India 181/7 (Virat Kohli 60, Rohit Sharma 28, Shadab Khan 2/31) by 5 wickets

Player of the Match: Mohammad Nawaz for his 42 from 20, 1/25 & 3 catches

Head-to-Head: India and Pakistan have faced each other 10 times in T20Is and India leads the way with 8 wins (including a win in a bowl-out)

Previous Meeting: The two sides met a week back at the same venue and India emerged victorious by 5 wickets in a thrilling last over finish.

Arguably the biggest rivalry in the sport of cricket - India vs Pakistan – took place for the second Sunday in a row at the Dubai International Stadium in Dubai. This time it was a Super 4 clash between the two arch-rivals.

Lack of 6th bowler hurt India big time as Pakistan notch up first win in Super 4

India’s bowlers had a poor outing in the middle as they lacked the discipline, especially towards the end of the defence. They bowled as many as 5 wides in the last 3 overs which not only means 5 extra balls and runs, it also meant India were behind the over-rate and subsequently were allowed only 4 boundary riders for the final over.

Another thing to note is India didn’t utilize their 6th bowler, Deepak Hooda and this seriously dented India’s chances in the game. Three of the bowlers had a bad day at office going for more than 10 runs per over each. One could get a feeling that they really missed that one extra bowler.

Pakistan emerge victorious in high-scoring thriller

Both the sides had contrasting wins against the associate team Hong Kong in their respective previous encounters. India did manage to win against Hong Kong, but it was far from convincing especially at the end overs with the ball. On the other hand, Pakistan steamrolled Hong Kong with the ball as they skittled them out for 38, winning by 155 runs.

Pakistan skipper Babar Azam won the toss and opted to field first like India did in the previous outing. With Ravindra Jadeja injured, India were forced to make that change and Deepak Hooda came in his place. Also, Hardik Pandya returned to the side after being rested against Hong Kong and Ravi Bishnoi came in for Avesh Khan. Mohammad Hasnain featured in the playing XI for Pakistan, replacing an injured Shahnawaz Dahani.

India’s openers took advantage of the powerplay overs scoring 62/1 with both Rohit Sharma (28 off 16) and KL Rahul (28 off 20) scoring at a brisk pace. They attacked the fast bowlers initially before getting out in quick succession.

Spinners Mohammad Nawaz and Shadab Khan accounted for last match hero Suryakumar Yadav and Rishabh Pant for low scores. This didn’t hamper India’s scoring rate as the foundation was set in the first 6 overs and Virat Kohli went on with his usual style of play in the middle-overs. Despite losing wickets, India reached a competitive total of 181/7.

Pakistan in response lost Babar Azam yet again within the powerplay overs. But Mohammad Rizwan battling through an injury he sustained earlier, played his range of strokes. Even with Fakhar Zaman struggling to get any sort of timing at the other end, Pakistan stayed in the hunt due to a blistering knock by Mohammad Nawaz who was promoted up the order.

Nawaz shared an important 73-run stand with Mohammad Rizwan and this paved way for Pakistan’s middle-order to win a nail-baiter in the penultimate ball of a game.

Let’s assess the top three performances from the Super 4 match between Pakistan and India in Asia Cup 2022.

Asia Cup 2022, Super 4, India vs Pakistan_ Virat Kohli scores his 32nd half century (60 off 44) in T20Is _ Walking Wicket (Photo_ ©AFP_Getty Images)
Virat Kohli scores his 32nd half century (60 off 44) in T20Is (Photo: ©AFP/Getty Images)

Virat Kohli continued his brilliant run against Pakistan in T20Is

Coming after a blazing start from openers Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul, Virat Kohli showed his class for the second game in a row. He seemed to have got his old touch back in his breezy knock of 60 from 44 balls. He rotated the strike very well as in good old days and this helped India reach 181/7 in their quota of overs. Virat now has 406 runs with 4 half-centuries against Pakistan and his average is a mind-boggling 66 against the arch-rivals.

With this half century, Virat Kohli has the most number (32) of fifties in T20Is. Rohit Sharma with 31 stands at number 2 and Babar Azam with 27 at number 3.

Asia Cup 2022, Super 4, India vs Pakistan_ Mohammad Nawaz's all-round show (42, 1-25 and 3 catches) helps Pakistan beat India  _ Walking Wicket (Photo_ ©AFP_Getty Images)
Nawaz's all-round show (42 & 1-25) helps Pakistan beat India (Photo: ©AFP/Getty Images)

Mohammad Nawaz produces one of his best all-round performances yet

India’s openers were running away with the game and were poised to post a huge score on the board. But the spin twins, especially Mohammad Nawaz put breaks on the scoring rate and was rewarded with the wicket of Suryakumar Yadav. The left-hander also had a great day on the field as he caught as many as three catches.

The major surprise was his promotion up the order. Nawaz was sent at number 4 after the departure of Fakhar Zaman and the move proved to be a masterstroke as he played with elan. The main motive behind this was to increase the scoring rate which was on the slower side when he came and also to take on the two Indian leg spinners. Nawaz struck 2 sixes and 6 fours in a match-winning knock of 20-ball 42, his highest T20I score for Pakistan.

Asia Cup 2022, Super 4, India vs Pakistan_ Mohammad Rizwan's 71 off 51 helps Pakistan beat India _ Walking Wicket (Photo_ ©AFP_Getty Images)
Rizwan scores another half century (71 off 51) in Asia cup (Photo: ©AFP/Getty Images)

Mohammad Rizwan impresses again despite being injured

Pakistan opener Mohammad Rizwan took on the role of an anchor to perfection after the early dismissal of skipper Babar Azam. Rizwan, as he often does in this format, was able to score runs at will and never allowed the required rate to go up above the comfort zone.

His stay allowed Nawaz to play freely and the duo’s partnership of 73 runs from 39 balls was instrumental in Pakistan’s memorable win. Though Rizwan couldn’t see off the chase, his efforts were enough to take Pakistan within touching distance and the lower-order batters finished off the game with a ball to spare.

What’s to Come

Pakistan with this win look red-hot to reach the final of Asia Cup 2022 and will now take on Afghanistan and Sri Lanka in the coming days. The Babar Azam-led side will want to continue their dominant run in these games.

On the other hand, India will have to win both their Super 4 games against Sri Lanka and Afghanistan if they are to reach the final of Asia Cup. So, we can expect high quality and enthralling cricket coming our way.

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