Mahatma Gandhi’s India beats South Africa hollow

Barbados: Living up to the wishes and expectations of 1.4 billion Indians, the team led by Rohit Sharma displayed a wonderful combination of unity, courage and patience and defeated South Africa by seven runs in a thrilling match on Saturday and brought the T20 World Cup to India after 17 years.

Earlier, India had won the ICC One Day World Cup in 2011, after which India won the Champions Trophy in 2013. In this sense, India has won an ICC trophy after 11 years. This World Cup was very important for Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli because both the great players may soon retire from the T20 format.

This World Cup also meant a lot to coach Rahul Dravid. Under Dravid’s captaincy, India was eliminated in the group stage of the One Day World Cup in 2007. India won the toss and batted first and scored 176 runs for the loss of 7 wickets in reply to which South Africa could only score 169 runs for the loss of 8 wickets.

This is the first time in 17 years that India has won the T20 World Cup. Earlier, India won the T20 World Cup for the first time in 2007 under the leadership of Mahendra Singh Dhoni. Due to the brave batting of Heinrich Klaasen (52) and David Miller (21), South Africa was easily reaching the target given by India and it needed 30 runs from 30 balls.

At this crucial moment, Hardik Pandya (three wickets for 20 runs) raised India’s hopes by taking the wicket of Klaasen, after which Surya Kumar Yadav turned the match in India’s favour by taking a brilliant catch of David Miller on the boundary line on Hardik’s ball. With the help of Virat Kohli’s (76) sensible half-century and a crucial partnership of 72 runs with Axar Patel (47), India scored 176 runs for seven wickets. Virat’s bat, which remained silent almost throughout the tournament, roared loudly in the title match today.

Virat expressed his intentions by hitting three fours in Marco Johnson’s first over. India scored 15 runs in the first over, at that time it seemed that a score above 200 could be scored on this pitch, but the South African bowlers made a strong comeback and took three important wickets of India in the first power play itself, Rohit Sharma (9), Rishabh Pant (0) and Suryakumar Yadav (3), pushing the team in blue jersey on the backfoot and silence prevailed on the field.

Keshav Maharaj took the wickets of Rohit and Rishabh while Suryakumar was caught at deep square leg while trying to pull Kagiso Rabada’s ball. Akshar, who came to support Virat at this difficult time, batted with restraint and kept the scoreboard of India moving and both the batsmen added important 72 runs for the fourth wicket. Virat, who started the innings with an explosive innings, showed his intelligence and preferred to run between the wickets instead of hitting boundaries, while in the last over, he changed gears and tore apart the South African bowlers in his usual style.

He became the victim of Marco Jansen in the 19th over of the innings when, while trying to pull a back of length ball on middle and leg, the ball could not make proper contact with the bat and Rabada ran and caught his catch. He hit six fours and two sixes in 59 balls, while Akshar hit one four and four sixes in his 31-ball innings before being run out as the fourth wicket.

In the last over, Shivam Dubey (27) gave his wicket to Anrich Norkhiye in an attempt to increase the run rate. Ravindra Jadeja (2) also fell prey to Narkhia. Pandya returned unbeaten after scoring five runs. South Africa did not have a good start while chasing the target of 177 runs and in the second over Jasprit Bumrah bowled out Reeza Hendricks (4) and sent him to the pavilion.

In the very next over, Arshdeep Singh gave South Africa another blow by dismissing captain Aiden Markram (4). After this Quinton de Kock and Tristan Stubbs took charge of the innings. There was a partnership of 58 runs between the two for the third wicket. This partnership was broken by Axar Patel in the ninth over by dismissing Stubbs (31) in 21 balls. Heinrich Klaasen came to bat and took charge with de Kock.

In the 13th over, Arshdeep Singh dismissed de Kock for 39 runs in 31 balls and sent him to the pavilion. Heinrich Klaasen did not stop and batted aggressively, scoring 52 runs in 27 balls and leading his team to victory. On the first ball of the 17th over, Hardik Pandya dismissed Klaasen and changed the course of the match. After this, Marco Jansen (2) became the victim of Bumrah.

With this India took the cake.


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