That’s all for today. Simon Burnton’s report from Ahmedabad is below, and we’ll be back in the morning for live coverage of England v Afghanistan. Bye.
India captain Rohit Sharma speaks
The bowlers set the game up for us. Restricting them to 190 was a great effort – at one stage we were looking at 270/280. We pride ourselves on the fact that whoever gets the ball does the job for the team. It’s my job as captain to read the conditions and decide who is the best guy to bowl.
We’ve been very clear with what we want to do: who bats in what position and what happens is someone isn’t fit. Guys got runs and wickets going into the World Cup, so all in all it’s looking good. We don’t want to get too excited or too low. It’s a long tournament and we want to stay balanced. That is the key.
The Pakistan captain Babar Azam speaks
We started well, then suddenly we collapsed in the middle overs. It’s not good. We were aiming for 280/290 but that collapse cost us. With the new ball we were not up to the mark, though Rohit played an outstanding innings.
“If Geoffrey Boycott was called anything,” says John Starbuck, “it was (politely) the Barnsley Bore, which was inaccurate, as he came from Fitzwilliam, which is in Wakefield.”
The player of the match is … Jasprit Bumrah. He did bowl beautifully (7-1-19-2), but I assumed it would be Rohit. Anyway, here’s what he had to say.
It felt good. We try to analyse the wicket as soon as possible; we realised it was on the slower side and that a hard length would make run-scoring difficult. We knew as the ball got a little older it might reverse and grip a little bit. We were waiting for that and trying to make it as difficult is possible.
(On his ability to size up conditions so quickly) When I was young I used to ask a lot of questions to my senior and I think that helped me build up a lot of knowledge.
(On Rizwan’s wicket) It was turning (for Ravindra Jadeja) but not consistently. I count my slower ball as a spinner so I thought it could be a good option to make run-scoring difficult. I was trying to do that and it gripped – was one of those days.
(On bowling Shadab Khan) There was a little phase when there was reverse swing. It was an outswinger that I tried to bowl, and it was one of those occasions when the white ball did reverse swing. I’m very happy with the execution. As a youngster I saw Waqar Younis and Wasim Akram bowl some magical deliveries, so if he’s praising (the ball) that’s a good thing for me.
It’s now India 8-0 Pakistan at ODI World Cups, and this is the most emphatic win of the lot. Their captain Rohit Sharma was inspired with both brain and bat. First he presided over an almighty Pakistan collapse from 155/2 to 191 all out; then he pre-empted any new-ball ferocity from Pakistan by whacking six sixes in a 63-ball 86.
30.3 overs: India 192-3 (Iyer 53, Rahul 19) Shreyas Iyer does just that, crashing Nawaz down the ground for four to finish the match and bring up his first World Cup half-century. India have pulverised Pakistan with almost 20 overs to spare.
30th over: India 186-3 (Iyer 48, Rahul 18) Rahul mows Hasan Ali disdainfully down the ground for four. The rest is dot balls, which means Iyer will have the chance to reach his fifty and maybe finish the match in the next over.
29th over: India 182-3 (Iyer 48, Rahul 14) Rahul muscles Nawaz down the ground for his first boundary, aided by a misfield from the sliding Iftikhar. From a neutral perspective, this has been a lamentable mismatch.
28th over: India 175-3 (Iyer 47, Rahul 8) KL Rahul has quietly become a key player at No5. He’s bang in form, too: in his last 10 ODI, going back to the Asia Cup, he averages over 100. This is a chance to gently massage that average, which he does with a couple of singles and a classy back-foot punch for two off Rauf. India need 16 to win.
27th over: India 170-3 (Iyer 45, Rahul 5) “In response to Jeremy Boyce, I am considerably older than you and at no time did I hear Sir Vivian referred to as The Prince,” says Adam Roberts. “No-one outside Yorkshire called Boycott ‘King Geoff’ – if he had to be acknowledged it would be (redacted).”
26th over: India 168-3 (Iyer 44, Rahul 4) Haris Rauf, who was manhandled by Rohit Sharma earlier in the innings, replaces Afridi. His last ball is a jaffa that straightens to beat KL Rahul, who seems to be struggling to deal with the lack of pressure.
The contest is not long for this world, so while I remember, here’s a plug for Simon Burnton’s World Cup diary.
25th over: India 165-3 (Iyer 41, Rahul 4) Iyer drives Nawaz just short of extra cover. These two look unsure of the best way to dot the Is and cross the Ts. Thus far they have dealt solely in singles.
“I sat on the loo in the first innings just as India took their fourth wicket so I did, of course, stay there until the end of the Pakistani innings,” writes Deepak Puri. “A prolapse is a small price to pay for an Indian victory.”
Thank heavens Jim Royle wasn’t a cricket fan.
24th over: India 162-3 (Iyer 39, Rahul 3) Afridi’s performance is a bit of a silver lining for Pakistan. His form since returning with injury hasn’t been great, but tonight he has bowled with intelligence and intensity. His sixth over costs just one, which leaves him with figures of 6-0-36-2.
23rd over: India 161-3 (Iyer 38, Rahul 3) India need 31 from 27 overs; an arse-nipper it is not.
I’ll let you decide whether that link is safe to click.
22nd over: India 157-3 (Iyer 36, Rahul 1) “I can assure you that back in ‘t day Geoffrey was known as King Geoff, what with his hundred hundreds, hundred run-outs of his batting partners, taken to contact lenses rather than his old spectacles, and all,” says Jeremy Boyce. “When Viv hit the scene he was obviously the successor, so he was the Prince, young, handsome and dashing, just like the Ki….”
How funny. To a quadragenarian whippersnapper like me, he’s only ever been King Viv.
No century for Rohit Sharma, who has been duped by the returning Shaheen Afridi. He dragged a wide slower ball to midwicket, one hand coming off the bat, and Iftikhar Ahmed took a simple catch.
Rohit walks off looking thoroughly cheesed off at missing out on a ton, though a standing ovation should make him feel better. He made an elegant, sadistic 86 from 63 balls, with six sixes. Before that he captained like almost flawlessly, so the player of the match adjudicator has an enviably simple job.
21st over: India 154-2 (Rohit 85, Iyer 35) Iyer makes it back-to-back sixes for India, pummelling Nawaz down the ground, and then Rohit belts a cut for four.
India are going to obliterate the record for their fastest ODI runchase against Pakistan. That was in the Asia Cup in 2018, when they won with 21 overs to spare.
20th over: India 139-2 (Rohit 80, Iyer 28) Rohit sweeps Shadab round the corner for four. Afridi made a good sliding stop, only to knock the ball against his trailing arm and over the boundary.
Shadab’s next ball is a high full toss. He might as well have thrown it straight into the crowd, because that’s where Rohit put it. It’s his sixth six, and he is 20 runs away from – and I’m going to keep repeating this statistic because it is absurd – an eighth century in his last 15 World Cup innings. Nobody else has scored more than six.
As we mentioned, Pakistan’s next game is against Australia on Friday. India beat Bangladesh next, then New Zealand a week tomorrow. Also, I’ve just realised Pakistan’s last league game is against England. Imagine if that’s a de facto quarter-final.
19th over: India 129-2 (Rohit 68, Iyer 27) Another quiet over from the left-arm spinner Mohammad Nawaz. Three singles from it, the last of which brings up a classy fifty partnership.
“Is there an accurate figure for the number of spectators today?” asks Molly Blake.
I don’t think there has been an official attendance, accurate or otherwise. I’d imagine it’s definitely in six figures.
18th over: India 126-2 (Rohit 67, Iyer 25) The score is India 7-0 Pakistan. Not World Cup wins against each other, but sixes hit in this match. Shreyas Iyer has just struck the seventh, launching Shadab Khan down the crowd. (It’s also 7-0 in World Cup head-to-heads, though it’s about to become 8-0.)
“What is it with Pakistan when they face India in a World Cup?” wonders Krishnamoorthy V. “The closest parallel that comes to my mind is the aversion of Torres to the net after moving to Stamford Bridge from Liverpool.”
For a long time their ODI record against India was excellent, but in the last 15 years or so – with one entirely glorious exception – it has been hopeless.
17th over: India 117-2 (Rohit 66, Iyer 18) Pakistan should try to rationalise this defeat on the grounds that they always lose to India, and almost every other team should lose to India in the league phase as well. The net run-rate hit isn’t ideal, but there’s plenty of time to make that up. If they beat three of England, South Africa, New Zealand and Australia, they will qualify for the semi-finals. Two wins might be enough.
16th over: India 116-2 (Rohit 65, Iyer 17) Rohit guides Shadab past past for four. It’s a shame that this has turned into yet another mismatch, but India have played with intimidating authority. It’s hard to see anyone beating them, although many of us thought the same in 2019.
“It was an argument about Duckworth-Lewis and not a foot-rub that really got Tony ‘Rocky Horror’ thrown out of that window,” says Niall Mullen.
The word is that the practice of everyone sitting in exactly same position for superstitious reasons during a nervous runchase stems from a misunderstanding when somebody put the Pulp Fiction soundtrack on in the dressing-room. (NB: clip contains adult/Tarantinian language)
15th over: India 110-2 (Rohit 61, Iyer 16) Pakistan are feeding Rohit Sharma like a bowling machine. Another short ball from Rauf is pulled easily into the crowd, and a single takes Rohit to 61 from 48 balls. It looks like he is heading for – and this is a preposterous statistic – his eighth century in the last 15 World Cup innings.
14th over: India 101-2 (Rohit 52, Iyer 15) Shadab Khan replaces Hasan Ali, and Rohit drives his first ball for a single to reach another half-century: 36 balls, three fours, four sixes. He started a bit skittishly but since then it’s been the usual imperious stuff.
“Is it just net run-rate stopping Pakistan putting in 3 slips and a gully?” wonders Niall Mullen.
Net run-rate and pride. Marsellus Wallace didn’t think much of either, although his monologue about protecting net run-rate didn’t make the final cut.
13th over: India 96-2 (Rohit 49, Iyer 13) Too straight from Rauf, and Iyer moves into double figures with a simple flick to the fine-leg boundary. Time to start singing Bon Jovi: India need 96 to win.
12th over: India 88-2 (Rohit 47, Iyer 7) Iyer swivel-pulls Hasan Ali expertly for four, and India need 104 from 38 overs.
11th over: India 81-2 (Rohit 46, Iyer 1) Another quick wicket might make things interesting – and Rauf almost gets it with an excellent yorker to Shreyas Iyer, the new batter. Iyer squeezed it into the ground and reacted smartly to knock the ball away as it deflected in the general direction of the stumps.
Rauf tries to get himself going with a gratuitous throw back towards Iyer, which leads to a chorus of pantomime boos from the crowd. Iyer gets off the mark with a mistimed pull for a single.
That was a really good over from Haris Rauf. If only Pakistan’s attack had 250 to defend.
10th over: India 79-2 (Rohit 45, Iyer 0) “I don’t get this ‘150-2 at 30 overs is a good platform’ thing that appears to be revived as both a tactic and a commentary cliché,” says Gary Naylor. “Morgan’s England got rid of it (until the final in 2019, which they almost lost as a result) and won far more than they lost by asking the best batters to hit the most boundaries whenever they were in.
“Everyone castigates the 4, 5 or 6 for getting out for 30 off 25 balls but is 50 off 60 that much better if it means 8, 9 and 10 have to make 30 off 25 to get up to a competitive score? You risk 200 all out of course, but the reward is a lot of 340+ scores.”
That’s a lot of numbers, and my head hurts slightly. I broadly agree with you, though surely it depends on pitches, context and the strengths of a particular side. For example, a more old-fashioned approach has worked brilliantly for South Africa this year. And much as I love Eoin Morgan, and feel exceptionally smug having defended him when so many people wanted rid of him between 2015-18, I think Australia’s 2007 team might have been the first to turn a 50-over innings into a sprint.
No runchase goodies for Virat Kohli today. He cloths a pull straight to mid-on and walks off after making 16 from 17 balls. His average in this World Cup is now a pitiful 78.
9th over: India 77-1 (Rohit 44, Kohli 15) Another devastating statement of intent from Rohit Sharma, who drives Haris Rauf’s second ball over long on. That’s his 300th six in ODIs, which puts him 300 up on you and me.
Kohli survives a run-out chance after being called through for a dodgy single. He was short of his ground when Afridi’s throw from mid-on missed the stumps at the striker’s end.
Good lord, make that 301 sixes: Rohit has opened the face to drive a slower ball spectacularly over extra cover and into the crowd. Sadism is rarely as elegant as this. As we said earlier, he doesn’t want to beat Pakistan, he wants to humiliate them.
“Sympathy for King Geoff?” sniffs Jeremy Boyce. “I suppose one should show a little kindness to anyone who insists on bowling in their cap. Joel Garner it wasn’t… Anyway, Prince Viv, not for the first or last time, put the old pretender firmly in his place.”
Yes, although by all accounts he should have been out for 20-odd to Mike Hendrick (but not first ball as is often suggested). And surely Viv was the king?
8th over: India 63-1 (Rohit 31, Kohli 14) The left-arm spinner Mohammad Nawaz assumes the position. Rohit Sharma humours him for a few deliveries and then flicks lazily over midwicket for six. We’ve seen greatness so often from these two that it’s easy to lose sight of how good they are.
This is getting very ugly for Pakistan, who face being thrashed in a manner that could fracture morale ahead of a vital game against Australia on Friday. The loser of that one will be in all sorts.
7th over: India 54-1 (Rohit 23, Kohli 13) Afridi decides to test Rohit with the short ball, and instantly regrets it. Rohit hooks effortlessly into the crowd at long leg, the first six of the entire match.
Kohli adds bleach to Pakistan’s wounds with back-to-back boundaries, a pull through midwicket followed by an exhilarating cover drive. India are romping to victory, and we haven’t yet had 50 overs in the match.
6th over: India 39-1 (Rohit 16, Kohli 5) Of those who have played at least 10 innings at a men’s World Cup, only Lance Klusener (124.00), Andrew Symonds (103.00) and Ben Stokes (66.42) have a higher average than Rohit Sharma (66.17). He’s been slightly skittish tonight and almost offers Hasan Ali a return catch with an uppish drive.
A good over from Hasan includes five successive dot balls to Kohli.
5th over: India 38-1 (Rohit 15, Kohli 5) Afridi switches round the wicke to Rohit, who edges a lusty yahoo between slip and backward point. He’s playing very aggressively here, especially as the required run rate is below 3.5 an over. That’s Kohli’s first boundary.
Kohli looks suspciously at the pitch after defending a ball that keeps a bit low. The next delivery is full, wide and skimmed thrillingly through the covers for four.
“Thank you for the painful reminder of that devastating denouement in 1979,” says Brian Withington. “In the spirit of recycling, I quote from my email to you of 2021 (which I don’t think got used then).
“I watched the 1979 WC final on a black and white TV in my student accommodation and distinctly recall the disappointment when Joel Garner comprehensively yorked Graham Gooch, who was desperately trying to retrieve the situation.
“I recall reading later Brearley’s admission that he was mistakenly swept along by the tea-time euphoria that all he and Boycott needed to do was keep going – he mentioned Derek Randall in particular as congratulating them on the game being in the bag.
“On reviewing now it’s striking that there was both full lunch and tea intervals as well as a break between innings, and I’m guessing it was 60 overs a side, too!”
Lord Beefy also told Brearley and Boycott to keep going, which doesn’t quite compute. After taking a subterranean dive into that game for a Wisden piece in 2019 I had a lot more sympathy for Brearley and Boycott.
4th over: India 31-1 (Rohit 14, Kohli 0) Rohit cuts Hasan Ali to the fence, inside-edges short of the keeper and then flicks beautifully through midwicket for four more. The way India have started suggests they don’t want to beat Pakistan; they want to humiliate them.
3rd over: India 22-1 (Rohit 5, Kohli 0) That was a much better over from Afridi, who induced a couple of false strokes from Rohit before dismissing Gill. Early wickets are Pakistan’s only hope.
Silence. Gill slaps Afridi straight to backward point, where Shadab Khan takes a very sharp catch. Afridi strikes the usual pose, arms spread wide, and Gill goes for a silken cameo of 16 from 11 balls.
2nd over: India 22-0 (Rohit 5, Gill 16) Hasan Ali shares the new ball with Shaheen, but Gill ups the punishment with three fours in the over. He drives exquisitely between extra cover and mid off for four, an almost identical boundary to the one he stroked in the previous over, waves another drive to the cover fence and helps a poor delivery to fine leg.
If there has ever been a more elegant opening partnership than Rohit Sharma and Shubman Gill, I’d like to see them.
1st over: India 10-0 (Rohit 5, Gill 4) Rohit Sharma makes the most languid statement of intent, flicking Afrdi’s first ball up and over the leg side for four.
Shubman Gill, back in the side after Dengue fever, times his first ball past extra cover for four more.
There’s no more than a hint of inswing for Afridi, who has an LBW appeal turned down when Gill is hit by a full toss, and that’s a chastening start for Pakistan.
Here come the players. Shaheen Shah Afridi will open the bowling to Rohit Sharma and Shubman Gill. A wicketless first spell is not an option.
“Just back from a lovely long bike ride,” says Jeremy Boyce. “Glad I got off before I checked the score otherwise it could have been a nasty fall, much like Pakistan’s innings. As for the lack of close finishes, isn’t it a bit like the Rugby WC: te pool games can be too one-sided, the whole level will ramp up once the knockouts start. Anyway, this one isn’t over yet, and lest we forget, it’s a funny old game cricket…”
That’s true to an extent, but there are differences – in the rugby World Cup you have quarter-finals, whereas here there will only be three knockout games. There are more minnows in that tournament too. The odd thing about this World Cup so far is that even the meetings between the heavyweights have been one-sided.
On the plus side, at least they didn’t lose eight wickets for 11 runs in their own World Cup final.
“Afternoon Rob!” writes Kimberley Thonger. “The lesson to be taken from that Pakistan innings is, when on the platform, trying to board the train to Big Score, mind the gap.”
Thanks Tim, hello everyone. Never mind the zinda, that was just plain bad from Pakistan, who collapsed miserably from 155/2 to 191 all out and are facing an eighth consecutive defeat to India at an ODI World Cup.
It was an outstanding team effort from India – all five bowlers took two wickets apiece, just as they did in the 2011 semi-final – but there was a sad familiarity to Pakistan’s demise. Sad for Pakistan fans and neutrals: this is the 14th match of World Cup and we still haven’t have a close finish. Don’t expect one today. The cornered tigers of 1992 would struggle to defend a total that feels at least 80 below par.
What on earth happened there? I feel as stunned as Mohammad Nawaz looked. Pakistan were 155 for two with their two mainstays, Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan, motoring along – in the middle lane, but still, their only problem was failing to find top gear. Then Babar got out, to the erratic Mohammed Siraj, and the wheels fell off. Pakistan lost eight wickets for 36 in 13.1 overs of nothing at all from their point of view.
The player of the match at this stage is Rohit Sharma, by a mile. He kept making things happen with his bowling changes, showing some inspired faith in Siraj and Hardik Pandya, getting two wickets from all five of his main bowlers, bringing Bumrah back at just the right moment, and calling for some clever reviews. It’s all been a bummer for the game, a stunner for the flag-waving fans, and a masterclass for anyone who is interested in the art of captaincy.
Can India knock off the 192 they need for victory? Can they do it in 30 overs? Or will Pakistan astound us all over again? Find out soon with the great Rob Smyth. Thanks for your company, correspondence and satirical thoughts about stadiums named after prime ministers.
Haris Rauf LBW b Jadeja 2 Yet another triumph for Rohit, who decides to review when this ball seems to Marais Erasmus, and many other people, to be sliding down leg. It’s hitting! And Pakistan’s calamity is complete, with seven overs unused.
42nd over: Pakistan 190-9 (Shaheen Shah Afridi 1, Haris Rauf 2) Yet another bowling change does the trick. Since Babar was out, we’ve seen seven wickets fall for 34 off 11.4 overs. “Only Pakistan can do this!” says Nasser Hussain, suddenly forgetting that he used to captain a team that always had a collapse up its sleeve. And still does – as do Australia at the moment. That said, this will surely go down as one of the all-time great capitulations. Only some magic from Shaheen Shah Afridi can save Pakistan now, and it’s not going to come from his bat.
Two in two balls! Hasan Ali, the only lower-order batter to show any fight, gets a top edge, and that’s a well-deserved wicket for Jadeja.
40th over: Pakistan 187-8 (Hasan Ali 12, Shaheen Shah Afridi 0) That was another surprise bowling change from Rohit: Bumrah off, Hardik back. He couldn’t be thinking he needed to save Bumrah up for the death, could he? Maybe he wanted Hardik to find some rhythm. His first ball was a loosener and Hasan belted it back past him for four, but then Rohit’s magic touch came into play yet again. This has been a masterclass, entitled Leadership on the Big Stage.