India v Pakistan – Semi FinalGaneshbabu Venkat |
At the end of 42 overs:
India are on the brink after getting Pakistan to 184-7 in 42 overs. They built up the pressure so much that Pakistan had to go for the shots and one by one succumbed. India vs Sri Lanka at Mumbai. Bring it on!!!
At the end of 25 overs:
Aided by a fluent 42 from Mohammed Hafeez, Pakistan started off well in their pursuit of their target of 261. However two wickets that of Kamran Akmal and Mohammed Hafeez dented their chase. The Indian bowlers lacked penetration although they made run scoring a little difficult. Nehra was wicketless although economical and Harbhajan continued his wicketless spells that have been the trend for sometime. Zaheer was his usual self and provided the first break through that of Akmal who cut the ball straight to Yuvraj at backward point. Hafeez tried an unnecessary “Dilshan” like scoop and edged it to Dhoni of Munaf Patel. For the past few overs Younis and Ashad have been tied down by the Indian bowlers and the run rate required has climbed close to six. In an attempt to up the scoring rate Shafiq was bowled by a straighter one from Yuvraj. With Pakistan’s two most experienced heads in the middle, yet again it looks like whichever team holds their nerves will emerge victorious. At the end of 25 overs Pakistan are 106/3.
End of Innings Update:
A magnificent spell of left arm fast bowling from Wahab Riaz who returned match figures of 5/46, his best in ODI’s restricted India to probably a par score of 260/9, giving Pakistan every chance to make the finals on Saturday against Sri Lanka. After the blazing start from Shewag, India did not force the initiative and was lackluster in their approach, not to take credit from the Pakistani bowlers who bowled beautifully with guile and variety to out think the Indians. A late flourish from Suresh Raina with the help of the tail helped India score 43 runs in the batting power play, however one feels India might be atlas 15 runs short of a par score. Having said that the Pakistani batting has not been so convincing in chasing totals and India if they can maintain discipline in their bowling should give Pakistan a tough fight.
At the end of 35 overs:
Saeed Ajmal, Wahab Riaz and Mohammed Hafeez made a mini-fight back for Pakistan which saw three more wickets fall during the period of play from the first drinks break to the second drinks break. It remains to be seen if dropping Ashwin was such a good move given the amount of turn Ajmal got and the purchase on the pitch for him. In that twenty over period India managed to add only 82 runs and lost three wickets that of Virat Kohli, Gautam Gambhir and Yuvraj singh for a first ball duck when he yorked himself to a Riaz’s full toss. I shudder to think what would have happened if Pakistan had held on to their chances. The stadium is now jam packed and will probably erupt if and when Tendulkar scores his 100th hundred which appears as though we might see it here. As I type this six players have dropped Tendulkar. India are 182/4 at the end of the 35th over.
At the end of 15 overs:
After winning the toss and electing to bat after all the drama of the prime ministers parading etc, Virendar Shewag bulldozed his way to glory by scoring a quick fire 38 runs with nine boundaries. Umar Gul was taken to the cleaners as he leaked 41 runs in four overs. Sachin Tendulkar looked a mute spectator from the other end as Shewag was utterly disdainful on the Pakistani bowlers. Eventually the introduction of the Wahab Riaz proved to be Shewag’s downfall as he was dismissed leg before wicket even though he referred the original decision. However after his dismissal India had a stroke of luck and lived a charmed life. Tendulkar who was given out had his decision over turned by the DRS and survived another close stumping call, Then he was dropped by Misbah of Afridi and rode his luck. At the end of the first 15 overs India had motored on to a healthy 90/1. Needless to say the crowd has been electrifying, however they should have had the senses to hold this game of such magnitude at the Eden Gardens.
Start of the innings :
Well, Well, Well.. The match has gotten underway and shewag crunched one through the covers for four. The crowd seems to be all Indian. I wonder where those Pakistani tickets and the supprters are for all the hype that was created that there were tons of them.. Follow this page for more updates during the break etc..
There has been so much hype around this game. Although I got a crappy seat I cannot complain being part of history, But for all the hype. I think India should beat Pakistan fairly easily. However We will have to wait and see. Please share your thoughts in the Cricket Web Forum as I blog live here too.