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HindustanTimes Thu,28 Aug 2014
World T20: When Virat was left fretting on one end
Nilankur Das , Hindustan Times
Mirpur, April 07, 2014
First Published: 00:08 IST(7/4/2014)
Last Updated: 02:06 IST(7/4/2014)

Throughout the India innings it appeared that the match was happening on two different wickets. On one end, Virat Kohli was hitting through the line, getting into positions early and getting under the ball. At the other end Indian batsmen struggled to even fetch singles.

After the 16th over, Virat was batting on 70 off 50 balls. He had just hit two fours and a six off Nuwan Kulasekara. At the other end, Yuvraj Singh was repeatedly failing to put bat on ball.

The left-hander couldn’t to even take a single and hand back the strike to Virat. Of the remaining 24 balls, Virat got to face only seven. Even Mahendra Singh Dhoni, who came ahead of Suresh Raina after Yuvraj was dismissed, caught in the deep off a full toss, failed to give the strike to Virat. As long as Yuvraj - he of the six sixes in a T20 game fame - batted, the running between the wickets also dipped.

Virat’s frustration was showing. It was not a wicket that was easy to bat on, play shots at will. The rain just before the match had changed the conditions quite a bit and the wicket was a lot slower than what it was during the women’s final which was played on it just before the skies opened up.

The Sri Lankan bowlers did not have to try too much. All they needed to do was keep it just outside the off and slightly short of length. Most of the balls hit the toe of the bat, very few in the middle. And every time Yuvraj found a fielder, or failed to get it into the gap, the highest scorer of the tournament kept throwing the bat in the air.

Virat had his share of luck. Lasith Malinga dropped him off Rangana Herath. Virat was on 11 then. And looking at how the other batsmen fared, India were lucky even to get to 130.


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