India cruise home to take series

A superb performance from their bowlers and in the field skittled Pakistan for just 161, and then their batsmen, despite a poor start saw them home with ease. India clinched the series, and Pakistan have a lot of things to improve upon.

India won the toss and elected to field, a move that soon paid dividends as Pakistan were poor from the outset. The young opening pair of Akmal and Butt were both gone by the twelfth over, and by the end of the thirteenth, Malik and Younis joined them, the latter for a first ball duck.

As Pakistan’s most experienced pair of batsmen, Inzamam Ul-Haq and Mohammad Yousuf did their best to rescue them from 29-4. They took Pakistan to 97 but the going was slow, and Yousuf was caught by Dhoni off an Agarkar outswinger.

At this point Pakistan took the gamble of replacing allrounder Yasir Arafat with a pure batsman, in Imran Farhat. The move did not prove successful, Farhat made 14 before he gave RP Singh his third wicket of the day, skewing a pull to mid-on. Singh quickly added Razzaq to his list of victims, caught behind.

India used Tendulkar as their fifth bowler, and he was cheap, going for just 27 off 9 overs, and he also picked up the huge wicket of Inzamam Ul-Haq, trapping him lbw with a googly one short of his 50. Without Inzamam the tail did their best, but Pathan quickly wrapped it up.

Set an easy total of 162, India lost Sachin Tendulkar early on, playing well away from his body and giving Akmal an easy catch. Gautam Gambhir’s innings of 21 included 5 boundaries, before he skied a pull attempting a sixth off Mohammad Sami.

From there on in, Dravid and Singh took away any hope the Pakistanis might have convinced themselves they had. They shared a composed stand of 85, whilst still going at a good rate. Both treated the crowd to some top-notch shots, and even when Yuvraj and Kaif went within seven balls of each other, the result was still clear.

Suresh Raina took India to the very end, once Dravid was given lbw, his 34 ball 35 ensuring India won the game with 17 overs and 5 wickets to spare.

Pakistan 161 all out
Inzamam Ul-Haq 49
Rudra Pratap Singh 4-40, Irfan Pathan 3-26

India won by 5 wickets

India 162-5
Rahul Dravid 59
Mohammad Sami 3-42

Cricket Web Man Of the Match:
Rudra Pratap Singh

Leave a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until they have been approved

More articles by Alex Crampton