BIRMINGHAM, July 2: India�s batting in the last 10 overs at the Edgbaston Cricket Ground on Tuesday might have given hope to some fans of a Bangladesh fightback, but two things they forgot � the experience of the Indian bowling attack and the slowness of the wicket.
After all, this was the same pitch where India played England on Sunday. Chasing 315 for a win, Bangladesh folded up for 286 as India not only won the match by 28 runs, but also qualified for the knockout stages.
Defending 314, in-form Shakib Al Hasan was the only real threat for the Indian bowlers as the Bangladesh batsmen came out pretty subdued in their chase. And once Hardik Pandya sent back Shakib for 66, caught by Dinesh Karthik, in the 34th over, it was advantage India.
The otherwise dangerous Mushfiqur Rahim also flattered to deceive as he hit a 23-ball 24 before Yuzvendra Chahal got him to sweep one straight to Mohammed Shami at square-leg.
Sabbir Rahman (36 off 36 balls) and Mohammad Saifuddin (52 not out off 38 balls) did try their best, but getting 90 runs from the last 10 overs with just four wickets in the bag proved to be a bit too much to expect from the Bangladesh lower-order after the top-order failed to provide the platform required while chasing scores in excess of 300.
But credit to Saifuddin for keeping Bangladesh in the game till the end with a quickfire unbeaten half-century.
Earlier, the Men in Blue rode a brilliant 104 from Rohit Sharma � his fourth century in this edition of the showpiece event � to post 314/9 in their 50 overs. Not to forget the brilliant comeback from Mustafizur Rahman as he finished with a fifer.
With skipper Virat Kohli opting to bat first, it was all about starting well. And Indian openers Rohit and KL Rahul did just that as they took the attack to the Bangladesh bowlers from the word go. In fact, the otherwise cautious Rohit made his intentions clear early into the match as he hit Bangladesh skipper Mashrafe Mortaza for a six in the very first over of the innings. And with Tamim Iqbal dropping him on 9, it was just the kind of leeway the opener needed to shift gears and deal only in boundaries.
Rahul on the other hand was happy to mix caution with aggression as the duo finished the first powerplay on 69/0. The Bangla bowlers wore a confused look as they were clearly short of ideas. Not just the bad balls, even the good deliveries were sent to the boundary as Rohit and Rahul looked like they were keen to break the backbone of the Bangladesh bowling attack.
India: 314/9 in 50 overs (Rohit Sharma 104, KL Rahul 77; Mustafizur Rahman 5/59)
Bangladesh: 286 all out in 48 overs (Shakib Al Hasan 66, Mohammad Saifuddin 51 not out; Jasprit Bumrah 4/55, Hardik Pandya 3/60) � IANS