Captain Rohit Sharma’s brilliant century it propelled India to an eight-wicket World Cup victory over Afghanistan in Delhi. Rohit Sharma Guides India to Effortless Win Over Afghanistan.
Rohit scored 131 off 84 balls to help India reach their target of 273 with 15 overs to spare. Rohit Sharma Guides India to an Effortless Win Over Afghanistan.
Afghanistan set a higher goal with Hashmatullah Shahidi’s 80, but Jasprit Bumrah’s 4-39 saw them finish 272-8.
After two games, the hosts have a spotless record, joining New Zealand and Pakistan, and will face their fierce rivals Pakistan in the tournament’s most anticipated encounter on Saturday in Ahmedabad.
Afghanistan will remain in Delhi until Sunday, when they face reigning champions England.
Rohit puts up a show to remember
Rohit was the leading run-scorer at the 2019 World Cup. However, he did not score in India’s opening triumph over Australia.
Conversely, this was an incredible and record-breaking knock that bulldozed a bewildered Afghan onslaught.
He got the fastest hundred by an Indian in a World Cup, reaching three figures in 63 balls, breaking Kapil Dev’s famed 72-ball effort at Tunbridge Wells in 1983. Rohit’s third six was his 554th in international cricket, surpassing Chris Gayle of the West Indies.
It was an innings that was both smooth and vicious in its clean-hitting. When Afghanistan fell short, Rohit resorted to pulling shots. He drove through or over the off-side when they were too full. Ishan Kishan made 14 runs in a century opening stand.
When Kishan offered a lead on 47, the 156-run partnership ended, allowing Virat Kohli to score 49 runs with Rohit.
Rohit eventually succumbed to his first dreadful stroke, a reckless sweep at Rashid Khan, but by then, only 68 points were required.
Kohli finished on 55 not out, following his 85 against Australia, with India looking menacing to the rest of the field.
Afghanistan has outperformed in terms of improvement
Afghanistan was short of their best in a lopsided loss to Bangladesh, but they showed glimpses that they can challenge as the tournament develops.
Hashmatullah and Azmatullah Omarzai combined 121 for the fourth wicket. Hashmatuallh, the left-hander, made exquisite glances to the third man, and Azmatullah smashed the ball down the ground.
With Afghanistan 184-3 in the 35th over, India showed signs of desperation before Azmatullah was dismissed for 62 by a slower ball from Hardik Pandya.
The innings stuttered, and wickets fell frequently, most notably when Hashmatullah was leg before sweeping Kuldeep Yadav’s left-arm wrist spin. With Bumrah at his best, Afghanistan could only add 83 runs in the remaining 15 overs.
The amount would never be enough to compete with India, especially as the dew under the floodlights made batting easier.
Nonetheless, given Rohit’s fantastic performance, nearly no target could have defended. Afghanistan oddly kept ace leg-spinner Rashid out until the 15th over, when most of the damage had been done.
Nothing was going to stop the incredible Rohit.
‘A long way to go,’ says one.
Player of the match, India captain Rohit Sharma:
“It is always special to score a hundred in a World Cup.
“I don’t want to think about records too much. There is a long way to go, and I don’t want to lose focus.
“It is very important to get momentum at the start and have the winning streak continue.”
Afghanistan captain Hashmatullah Shahidi:
“We had a target of 300+ in these conditions, especially as India’s batting line-up is strong. But back-to-back wickets cost us.
“We will try and learn from our mistakes and come back with a positive attitude.”
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