Belfast Telegraph

Home Sport Cricket

India fail to post imposing total as Afghanistan impress at Southampton

Underdogs need 225 to win

India are in trouble in Southampton (Nigel French/PA)
India are in trouble in Southampton (Nigel French/PA)

A curiously circumspect India limped to 224 for eight from the full 50 overs in their World Cup clash with Afghanistan at Southampton.

Virat Kohli top scored with 67 but even then the captain threw his wicket away with an uncharacteristically poor shot.

Kedhar Jadhav was the only other man to pass the half-century, mustering 52, in a sluggish innings from the much-fancied Indians.

bpanews_b75146e6-0fbc-4e4e-9fdc-c8ceda31f760_embedded243679783
India have work to do (Nigel French/PA)

England had blasted 397 for six in their 150-run victory over the Afghans, with Rashid Khan leaking a World Cup-record 110 runs from nine overs.

India continued their measured approach to the tournament at the Hampshire Bowl in contrast, but could not add a late run flurry to their total.

Instead the Indians had the confidence that the likes of in-form paceman Jasprit Bumrah would be able to rip through winless Afghanistan in the field.

Khan closed on figures of one for 38 from his 10 overs this time out, the 20-year-old quickly moving past that England horror-show.

Captain Gulbadin Naib and Mohammad Nabi both grabbed two wickets in a bowling performance that handed Afghanistan at least a chance of a result.

bpanews_b75146e6-0fbc-4e4e-9fdc-c8ceda31f760_embedded243677913
Virat Kohli top-scored (Nigel French/PA)

Rohit Sharma fired 122 against South Africa, 57 against Australia and a fine 140 to subdue fierce rivals Pakistan.

But the big-scoring opener could not extend that form here, misreading the line from Mujeeb Ur Rahman to walk on just one run.

While India steadied from seven for one to 41 for one from 10 overs, progress remained at best pedestrian.

Lokesh Rahul top-edged a sweep off Mohammad Nabi straight to Hazrat Zazai for 30 though, and then Vijay Shankar was caught leg before by Rahmat Shah for 29.

Kohli had racked up his 50 in the interim as India inched to 122 for three in the 27th over.

India continued to appear wholly unfazed by their slow pace, but certainly endured a wobble when Kohli threw his wicket away.

bpanews_b75146e6-0fbc-4e4e-9fdc-c8ceda31f760_embedded243679021
Afghanistan’s Mohammad Nabi celebrates (Nigel French/PA)

The nonplussed skipper walked off disgusted with himself after flashing at a neat ball from Nabi, to edge straight to Shah for 67.

Mahendra Singh Dhoni offered a typically-pedestrian 28 from 52 before being stumped by Ikram Ali Khil, and that left India 192 for five in the 45th over.

Jadhav reached his half century then quickly holed out, and that after Hardik Pandya had done likewise and Shami was clean bowled.

India have so far appeared wholly confident in keeping their powder dry in batting within themselves at this tournament. This time however only tight bowling would avoid Kohli and company taking that relaxed attitude a step too far.

PA

Popular

From Belfast Telegraph