England defeated India by 10 wickets in yesterday’s ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2022 second semi-final match at the Adelaide Oval. A contest that was billed as a clash between two of the strongest sides in the competition could not live up to the hype. England completely dominated proceedings to knock the Men in Blue out of the tournament.
Bowling first after winning the toss, England came up with an impressive effort to restrict India to 168/6. Chris Woakes got the early scalp of KL Rahul, having him caught behind for 5. Team India skipper Rohit Sharma once again struggled for fluency. He was dismissed for 27 off 28, following a failed attempt to go after Chris Jordan.
Unfortunately for India, the law of averages caught up with Suryakumar Yadav and he managed only 14 off 10 on Thursday. The in-form batter was foxed by a smart delivery from Adil Rashid outside off stump, and could only slice his big hit to a fielder in the deep square on the off side.
Virat Kohli (50 off 40) and Hardik Pandya (63 of 33) added 61 for the fourth wicket to give the Indian innings a much-needed boost. But Kohli was dismissed immediately after reaching his half-century, guiding a wide yorker from Jordan to short third man. Pandya’s superlative hitting at the death ensured the Men in Blue finished with a competitive score. The all-rounder smacked four fours and five sixes in his blazing innings.
Team India’s bowlers never looked threatening as they attempted to defend 168. Jos Buttler (80* off 49) cracked Bhuvneshwar Kumar for three fours in the first over, and that set the tone for the chase. At the other end, Alex Hales (86* off 47) launched three sixes inside the powerplay as England raced to 63/0 after six overs.
The rest of the England innings resembled a highlights package as the chasing side romped home in 16 overs. Hales was the aggressor, whacking seven sixes and three fours. Buttler, who was content playing second fiddle, also opened his shoulders once the result became a formality. He ended up with nine fours and three maximums.
The icing on the cake was a massive record for the Buttler-Hales combo – their unbeaten 170 run-stand is now the highest partnership in the history of the T20 World Cup.
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Rashid was outstanding once again with the ball. The leggie gave away only 20 runs in his four overs and took the prized scalp of Suryakumar. Jordan claimed three wickets, including that of Rohit and Kohli, although he was a bit expensive.
With the willow, Hales took the attack to the Indian camp and forced them into submission. Buttler played the perfect foil to Hales. He rotated the strike when his partner was in full flow, but also grabbed the boundary opportunities that came his way.
Hales was named Player of the Match for his bludgeoning knock that made a mockery of the target set by India.