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Wednesday, December 26, 2012

T20 Cricket: Pakistan Beat India By Five Wickets In Bangalore!



Finally, cricket between the arch-rivals, India Vs Pakistan, gets a new lease of life with start of the international bilateral Cricket Series in Bangalore on December 25, 2012. Finally, Pakistan arrives in India and plays its first match against India after five years. And, a team not playing international cricket for more than two months beats a team that has been playing cricket, cricket and cricket both on field and off the field. Pakistan beat India by five wickets in the first T20 match played in Bangalore last night.

Although the match looked to be in Pakistan’s favor for most part of the game the usual pressure, tension and twists and turns associated with any cricketing encounter between the archrivals were there too. Pakistan won the toss and put India in. India looked to be in perfect command cruising to 77 for no loss in under 11 overs with a strong batting line to follow, but thanks to super bowling by Umar Gul and Saeed Ajmal Pakistan engineered a major Indian collapse with the latter losing 9 wickets for just 47 runs.  There was not a single half century in the Indian innings with Gambhir and Rahane scoring 43 and 42 runs respectively. The Indian total of 133 runs looked immensely gettable.

Again, it was not a smooth ride for Pakistan. New entrant Bhuvneshwar Kumar put them on the backfoot taking three quick wickets and reduced Pakistan to 12 for 3 in 3 overs. But then, the player of the match skipper Mohammad Hafeez (61) and Shoaib Malik (57 not out) steadied the innings. The progress was slow, but considering the modest total Pakistan was on course. Whatever, you cannot take an India-Pakistan cricket match for granted. With just 16 runs to win in almost 3 overs and 7 wickets remaining Pakistan had a hiccup losing two quick wickets and the asking rate suddenly climbed up.  With the wicket advantage still behind Pakistan finally romped home with two balls to spare. The Scorecard:

The second and the last T20 international will be played on Friday the 28th of December in Ahmedabad (the match was postponed by a day due to a local issue). The One Day International Series will start on 30th December with first match in Chennai. The second ODI will be played on January 3, 2013 in Kolkata and the last ODI coming up on January 6 in Delhi. As Pakistan goes back home after than England comes back to play the ODI Series against India.
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