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Asia Cup 2023: Group A, NEP vs IND: Rohit and Gill's scintillating stand take India to Super Fours

Asia Cup 2023: Group A, Nepal vs India: Ravindra Jadeja's 3-40, Kushal Bhurtel-Aasif Sheikh's 65-run stand and Rohit Sharma-Shubman Gill's opening stand (147*) are top performances. India beat Nepal by 10 wickets and move to Super 4s.

Asia Cup 2023, Group A, India vs Nepal_ Rohit Sharma, Shubman Gill put up an unbeaten 147-run stand for India against Nepal _ Walking wicket (Images_ ©BCCI_Twitter)
Rohit-Gill put up an unbeaten 147-run stand for India against Nepal (Images: ©BCCI/Twitter)

Brief Scores: India 147/0 (Rohit 74*, Gill 67*) beat Nepal 230 (Aarif 58, Sompal 48, Jadeja 3/40) by 10 wickets. (DLS).

Player of the Match: Rohit Sharma (74 runs off 59 balls)

After their washout opening game against Pakistan, India locked horns with Nepal, who lost their previous encounter by a huge margin, for their second game of the Asia Cup 2023 at the Pallekele International Cricket Stadium in Kandy.

Talking point: India looked sloppy in catching and ground fielding

India looked really down with their body language. The high intensity needed to be added among the players in the game, and their fielding looked below par. The three dropped chances in the slips by Shreyas Iyer, the dolly at covers by Virat Kohli, or the missed chance, thanks to the poor technique of Ishan Kishan,, didn’t help their side at the start.

Even their ground fielding looked poor,, as the fielders needed more communication. Since the 2019 World Cup, India has had the second lowest success rate (75.1%) for catching efficiency in ODIs. They need to take care of this department very quickly.

The comprehensive victory helps India to qualify for the Super 4s

India captain Rohit Sharma, on winning the toss, opted to bowl first to give the bowlers some game time under their belt under overcast conditions. Nepal brought Bhim Sharki, replacing Aarif Sheikh, while India added Mohammad Shami in place of Jasprit Bumrah, who flew back to India for the birth of his first child.

Putting into bat first, helped by India’s sloppy fielding and the 65-run opening partnership between Kushal Bhurtel and Aasif Sheikh, Nepal reached 65/1 in the first 10 overs before India pulled them back to 109/4 at the halfway mark. The 50-run stand between Gulshan Jha and Dipendra Singh rescued them before they were bundled out for 230 in 48.2 overs.

India were in the third over of the chase when the clouds opened up. After a couple hours of rain, the target was reduced to 145 runs in 23 overs as both India openers came out with intent. After taking time for the first four overs, both went after the bowlers to reach 64/0 in 10 overs. Both batters celebrated their respective half-centuries as India reached 130/0 in 17 overs before registering a 10-wicket victory with 17 balls to spare.

Let’s scan the top three performances from the game between India and Nepal in Pallekele

Asia Cup 2023, Group A, India vs Nepal_Ravindra Jadeja took 3-40 against Nepal _ Walking wicket (Images_ ©BCCI_Twitter)
Jadeja took 3-40 against Nepal (Images: ©BCCI/Twitter)
Jadeja slowed down Nepal in the middle overs with 3/40

The 65-run opening stand provided Nepal with a powerful platform when India introduced Ravindra Jadeja into the attack. Jadeja has been a little under pressure, going wicketless for 10 of the 22 innings he’s bowled since the 2019 ICC ODI World Cup.

Jadeja finished his second over with the wicket of Bhim Sharki on 7, who, looking to square cut the full delivery, got an under edge onto his stumps. A couple of overs later, Nepal captain Rohit Paudel, on his score of 5, looking to cut the turning delivery, was caught by a sharp catch in the lone slip fielder.

Kushal Malla, aiming to smash Jadeja over mid-off, ended up slicing it to Mohammed Siraj, who was on the circle's edge at that exact position. Jadeja, who finished with figures of 3/40 in his 10 overs, now has 197 ODI wickets in 179 games.

Asia Cup 2023, Group A, India vs Nepal_ Aasif Sheikh, Kushal Bhurtel added 65 runs for the 1st wicket against India _ Walking wicket (Images_ ©ACCMedia1_Twitter)
Aasif- Bhurtel added 65 runs for the 1st wicket against India (Images: ©ACCMedia1/Twitter)
Nepal’s 65-run opening partnership with a provided them with a powerful platform

One of the biggest tasks for the Nepal openers was to tackle the new ball bowlers of India, and they did it not only by defending but also by showing their aggressive manner.

After being dropped on two back-to-back occasions, Sheikh clipped Siraj through the square leg for a boundary before Bhurtel showed his exclusive timing to get a gorgeous-looking boundary through mid-on. On the next ball, he nailed Siraj over fine leg for a six before Sheikh crunched the same bowler over square leg for two consecutive boundaries.

Bhurtel flicked Hardik Pandya through square leg for a four before pulling the short ball from Shardul Thakur over fine leg for a six as Nepal recorded 65 runs in 9.5 overs for the opening wicket. Bhurtel was dismissed on 38 runs to now have 1032 ODI runs in 46 innings, while Sheikh’s 58-run knock helped him to reach 1250 runs in 43 ODI innings.

Asia Cup 2023, Group A, India vs Nepal_ Rohit Sharma, Shubman Gill put up a -run stand for India against Nepal _ Walking wicket (Images_ ©BCCI_Twitter)
Rohit Sharma gets POTM for 74 off 59 balls (Images: ©BCCI/Twitter)
The unbeaten 147-run opening stand takes India home

With the revised target, India’s openers Rohit Sharma and Shubman Gill came out aggressively. Gill cracked three boundaries against Sompal Kami through cover-point, while Rohit used his feet to lift Karan KC over mid-on for the same result.

Sharma slapped Sandeep Lamichhane over mid-wicket for a four before sweeping him for a six in the deep-square region. Gill used his feet to loft the same bowler for another over boundary down the ground while Rohit hoisted Lamichhane for another huge six over deep mid-wicket. Rohit Sharma celebrated his 49th ODI fifty in 39 balls with a boundary over mid-wicket.

After another six pulled over deep mid-wicket by Rohit Sharma, Gill notched up his seventh ODI fifty with a boundary behind the square region. Both recorded their third-century partnership to take India home by ten wickets. Rohit remained on 74* in 59 balls with the help of six boundaries and five sixes to now have 9922 ODI runs in 246 innings, while Gill, who finished on 67* in 72 balls shouldering on eight fours and one six, now has 1514 runs in 29 ODI innings.

Stats highlights from Nepal vs India, Asia Cup 2023

  • Ravindra Jadeja, with 22 scalps in the Asia Cup, is now the joint most wicket-taker of the tournament with Irfan Pathan.

Asia Cup 2023, Group A Points Table
Asia Cup 2023, Group A Points Table
Group A Points Table
Points table scenario and what’s to come

With the victory, India, with two points and a net run rate of +2.68, joins Pakistan to be qualified from group A for the Super 4 stage of the competition.

From group B, Sri Lanka will take on Afghanistan on September 5 at the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore.

Top Twitter Reactions from Nepal vs India, Group A game, Asia Cup 2023


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