In a highly anticipated clash between arch-rivals India and Pakistan in the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup, India emerged as the dominant force, securing a comprehensive seven-wicket victory in Ahmedabad. The win marked India’s eighth consecutive triumph over Pakistan in World Cup matches, underlining their cricketing prowess.
The game’s outcome was effectively decided in the first innings as Pakistan’s batting lineup collapsed, losing eight wickets for just 36 runs after reaching 155/2. India’s bowlers orchestrated this dramatic turnaround, with Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Siraj, Hardik Pandya, Kuldeep Yadav, and Ravindra Jadeja all contributing with two wickets each.
Opting to bowl first after winning the toss, India made one change to their playing XI, with the inclusion of Shubman Gill, who returned from injury to replace Ishan Kishan. Pakistan’s openers, Abdullah Shafique and Imam-ul-Haq, got their team off to a brisk start, particularly targeting Mohammed Siraj’s bowling. However, Siraj struck back, trapping Shafique lbw for 20. Imam-ul-Haq also fell, edging behind off Hardik Pandya.
With Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan at the crease, Pakistan aimed to build a substantial total. The pair added 82 runs to the scoreboard, pushing the total to 155/2. However, the turning point came when Babar Azam, who had scored his first ODI half-century against India, was dismissed by Mohammed Siraj.
Babar’s departure triggered a dramatic collapse for Pakistan. Kuldeep Yadav struck twice in one over, removing Saud Shakeel and Iftikhar Ahmed. Sensing an opportunity to finish things quickly, India’s captain Rohit Sharma brought Jasprit Bumrah back into the attack, and Bumrah delivered with two crucial wickets in successive overs.
Bumrah first dismissed Mohammad Rizwan, who was set on the verge of a half-century, with a deceptive off-cutter. In the following over, Bumrah’s delivery curved in to clean up Shadab Khan’s off-stump. Ravindra Jadeja wrapped up the tail, dismissing Hasan Ali and Haris Rauf, as Pakistan was bowled out for a disappointing total of 191.
Among the six Indian bowlers used, only Shardul Thakur failed to take a wicket. Bumrah, Siraj, Pandya, Yadav, and Jadeja all contributed with two wickets each.
In India’s reply, Rohit Sharma and Shubman Gill provided a rapid start. Rohit found the boundary off the first ball, and Gill displayed attacking intent by hitting three consecutive fours off Hasan Ali in the second over. However, Shaheen Afridi removed the aggressive Gill, who was caught by Shadab Khan at point for 16.
Wickets in the powerplay were crucial for Pakistan’s chances, but Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli added 56 runs for the second wicket. Rohit played aggressive cricket, reaching his fifty off just 36 balls, and was well on his way to a century before being dismissed for 86 by Shaheen Afridi.
Shreyas Iyer and KL Rahul then guided India to a comfortable seven-wicket victory. Iyer remained unbeaten on 53*, and the win came with 19.3 overs to spare, providing a significant boost to India’s net run rate.
This victory propelled India to the top of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 table, ahead of New Zealand on net run rate, with both teams having won all three of their matches. Pakistan, despite this setback, remains fourth in the standings and remains a strong contender for a spot in the semi-finals.
The match lived up to its billing as a high-stakes encounter between two cricketing giants, and India’s clinical performance has further solidified their reputation as a formidable force in the tournament.
- Pakistan 191 (Babar Azam 50, Mohammad Rizwan 49; Jasprit Bumrah 2-19)
- India 192/3 (Rohit Sharma 86, Shreyas Iyer 53*; Shaheen Afridi 2-36).