India ended the Asia Cup with a consolation win
India ended the Asia Cup with a consolation win. Team India beat Afghanistan by 101 runs on Thursday (September 8). In response to India’s 212 runs, Nabi-Rashida collected 111 runs after losing 8 wickets in the scheduled 20 overs. In the face of bowling cannon of Indian bowlers, Afghans fell one after another, but at the other end, Ibrahim Zardan batted brilliantly. The Afghan batsman completed his half century in 55 balls. He remained unbeaten on 64 runs off 59 balls.
Pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar picked up 5 wickets with just 4 runs in the 8 wickets that fell to the Afghans. Sri Lanka will face Pakistan in the final match of the Super Four on Friday. These two teams will meet in the final on Sunday, September 11.
The 15th Asia Cup is one of the most memorable tournaments in Virat Kohli’s career. In order to regain his lost rhythm, he scored his first T20 century against Afghanistan on Thursday. Kohli, the owner of 27 centuries in 102 Tests and 43 centuries in 262 ODIs, played the highest innings of 94 runs in T20Is before taking the field against Afghanistan today in the Super Four match in Dubai. Kohli scored a 53-ball century against the Afghans. Earlier on 23 December 2019, he scored 136 runs against Bangladesh at Eden Gardens, Kolkata. After that there is no more century in his bat. In almost three years and 1021 days, Kohli did not see three figures in any format – domestic, international, franchise T20.
With 71 centuries, Kohli is now jointly with Ricky Ponting as the second highest three-figure scorer in international cricket. Sachin Tendulkar tops all with 100 centuries.
He made his fifty in just 32 balls on Thursday, it took Kohli 53 balls to score a century. Means he played only 21 balls to score the next 50 runs. He hit 6 sixes with 12 fours in all in the innings. The Afghan spinners were particularly aggressive today, scoring 42 runs off a favorite flick shot.
India collected 212 runs for the loss of 2 wickets in the scheduled 20 overs on Thursday in their final match of the Asia Cup Super Four at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium. KL Rahul scored 61, Suryakumar Yadav scored 6 runs for the team. On the other hand, Virat Kohli remained unbeaten on 122 off 61 balls and Rishabh Pant on 20 off 16 balls. Among the Afghanistan bowlers, Farid Ahmad Malik took 2 wickets.
As both teams were already eliminated from the tournament, this match was only a regulation match. Regular captain Rohit Sharma did not play in this match as it was unimportant. Acting captain Lokesh Rahul will take the lead instead. Two more changes have been made. Hardik Pandya and Yuvendra Chahal have been rested for this match. Instead, Dinesh Karthik, Akshar Patel and Deepak Chahar got a chance in the Indian team. On the other hand, Afghanistan has not brought any change.
India and Afghanistan have met 4 times in the history of international T20 cricket so far. Team India has won all of them. Rohit-Kohli defeated Afghanistan by 66 runs in the last Twenty20 World Cup. India and Afghanistan have met 3 times in the Asia Cup. India won 2 of them, another match was a draw. In the 2018 Asia Cup, the match between the two teams was drawn in Dubai. Both the teams had a great start in this year’s Asia Cup. In the group stage, India beat arch rivals Pakistan and Hong Kong to become group champions in the Super Four.
On the other hand, Afghanistan lost to Sri Lanka and Bangladesh as group champions. But both teams lost their first two matches in the Super Four. India were knocked out of the tournament after losing to Pakistan and Sri Lanka. And Afghanistan lost the first match against Sri Lanka. India also confirmed their exit with themselves after losing by 1 wicket in an exciting match against Pakistan last Wednesday.