Dubai: India yet again proved that they aren’t one of those that would take a step back from competitions and would lean forward to welcome any kind of conflict. Last night the world noticed an edge-of-the-seat last ball turner match of India against Bangladesh, that ended up with India winning seventh Asia Cup title, beating the rival by 3 wickets at the Dubai International Stadium on Friday.
Just three days ago, India was held to a tie against Afghanistan despite the match being not that important, which led everyone to raise questions whether India is loosing form days before the final. On Friday, Bangladesh did the same, took the game to India and took them to the brink.
Despite the early glitch caused by Shikhar Dhawan and Ambati Rayudu, it was India’s middle order chipped in with some important runs. Ravindra Jadeja, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Kedar Jadhav and Kuldeep Yadav steer India across the finish line, which indeed looked far from convincing. Although India has to just 223 runs in 300 deliveries, the match lasted to the very the last ball. However, former Indian players applauded India for their record victory, but they do mentioned Bangladesh for throwing such a grit performance against India despite having two of their best players to injury.
Kedar Jadhav found special mention for the courage he showed to pull India back into the victory lines, despite aggravating his hamstring injury. During the 35th over, Jadhav (at 12 runs that time) attempted to sprint for a quick single and immediately after finishing the run, clutched his right hamstring. He was then bandaged by the physios but he kept limping for runs thereafter.
As the pressure build up, Jadhav became unable to take quick singles, Dhoni entered the crease and tried to go for a shot, but instead gave his wicket away. Indian team management decided to sent Bhuvneshwar Kumar in the middle.
The partnership shared by Jadeja and Bhuvneshwar took India close to the total. With 11 runs off 17 deliveries, Jadeja edged off Rubel’s delivery and was was caught behind by Mushfiqur Rahim.
Jadhav left Bhuvneshwar again in the middle and Bhuvneshwar got caught out in the very next over. Thereafter, Jadhav still struggling along with Kuldeep, took singles and doubles to keep India floating. With 6 runs off 6 balls, the two took four singles and one double to win the game on the final delivery of the match.
Despite the win, experts pointed out that the middle order has to come out with more grace and form like a rock solid ahead of the World Cup in England next year.
India’s next assignment starts next month when they host West Indies for 2 Tests, 5 ODIs and 3 T20Is startting October 4.