Powered by Virat Kohli’s 19th century, India romped home to a comprehensive six-wicket win over Bangladesh in the second One-Day International (ODI) of the Asia Cup held at the Khan Shaheb Osman Ali Stadium here Wednesday.
Knowing India’s strengths as a chasing pack, skipper Kohli put Bangladesh in to bat first. The hosts put up a strong batting show to notch up a challenging total of 279/7 which India chased down in 49 overs.
A 213-run third-wicket partnership between Kohli (136) and Ajinkya Rahane (73) helped India earn sweet revenge over their 2010 Asia Cup encounter loss to Bangladesh.
Kohli’s second highest ODI score and Rahane’s fourth half-century guided the five-time champions to a comfortable win in their opening game of the tournament.
India started off steadily with opener Shikhar Dhawan (28) and Rohit Sharma (21), who kept the scoreboard ticking. However, the visitors received a jolt when both got out in a span of 10 balls and four runs (54/2).
In came Kohli and Rahane, who struck a fantastic partnership at a run-rate of 6.48 per over.
The India captain hit 16 boundaries and two sixes in his knock before being finally yorked by pacer Rubel Hossain with India only 13 runs away from victory. Rahane also got out soon and Ambati Rayudu (9 not out) and Dinesh Karthik (2 not out) only had to complete the formalities.
Earlier, Bangladesh were steered to a challenging total after captain Mushfiqur Rahim played a captain’s knock of 117 runs off 113 deliveries, comprising seven fours and two sixes.
The hosts got off to a slow start with opener Shamsur Rahman (7) perishing early on. Mominul Haque (23) tried to build a partnership with wicketkeeper-batsman Anamul Haque (77) before being smartly stumped by India keeper Karthik (49/2).
Then Anamul joined hands with the 25-year-old Mushfiqur to build a 133-run third-wicket partnership. Anamul scored his first half-century, consisting five boundaries and three huge sixes.
After Anamul was bowled by Varun Aaron, Mushfiqur continued his onslaught on the Indian bowling. He particularly hammered Aaron, who reverted by bowling a full toss which hit the Bangladeshi captain on his chest. Aaron was immediately taken off the attack by the umpires as this was his second above-the-waist delivery.
The Jharkhand pacer ended up conceding 74 runs from 7.5 overs, the second-highest by a bowler against Bangladesh after United Arab Emirate’s Khurram Khan, who conceded 78 earlier.
Mushfiqur went on to complete his second century and held the Bangladeshi innings together. India scalped Naeem Islam (14) and Nasir Hossain (1) in quick succession before Ziaur Rahman (18) also fell after clearing the boundary line thrice.
Mushfiqur finally got caught in the last over, trying to accelerate. But he had done the job for his country, anchoring Bangladesh to a competitive total.
Pacer Mohammed Shami was pick of the Indian bowlers, taking four wickets from his quota of 10 overs and being economical at the start of the innings.
India next play Sri Lanka Friday.