World Cup 2019: Rohit, Bumrah take India into semifinals

Riding on Rohit Sharma's century and four-wicket haul by Jasprit Bumrah, India pulled off a 28-run win and knocked Bangladesh out of World Cup 2019.

Jasprit Bumrah's crucial blows gave India a 28-run victory in Birmingham.   -  AP Photo

The Men in Blue secured their tryst with the World Cup semifinal. At Edgbaston, on a Tuesday oscillating between clear skies and a canopy of clouds, Virat Kohli’s men defeated Bangladesh by 28 runs to register their sixth triumph in the global tournament’s latest edition.

The victory propelled India to 13 points, just behind current topper Australia (14). Bangladesh (7), meanwhile, bid farewell to its last-four hopes. India posted 314 for nine, a score that revolved around Rohit Sharma’s fourth hundred (104, 92b, 7x4, 5x6) in this World Cup and there were handy contributions from K.L. Rahul (77) and Rishabh Pant (48). Mashrafe Mortaza’s men replied with 286 in 48 overs .

Pursuing a 300-plus target, Bangladesh needed its top-order to fire. Tamim Iqbal struck a few fours and Soumya Sarkar remained watchful against the trio of Bhuvneshwar Kumar, who replaced Kuldeep Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Shami. But India found a breach in the tenth over as Tamim chopped Shami onto his stumps.

Scorecard | As it happened

Sarkar then survived an LBW review and an angry Kohli exchanged words with umpires Marais Erasmus and Ruchira Palliyaguruge. The Indian captain need not have expended energy as after a few overs Sarkar drilled Hardik Pandya into Kohli’s palms at short extra-cover.

Bangladesh was 74 for two and its seniors Shakib Al Hasan and Mushfiqur Rahim had an arduous task. Shakib nudged around while Mushfiqur got a grip on Yuzvendra Chahal but the leg-spinner proved equal to the challenge as the batsman uppishly swept to a waiting Shami.

 

The contest’s fate rested on Shakib’s lone-ranger act. The southpaw battled hard and found joy in a cover driven four off Pandya. But he missed doughty colleagues. Liton Das essayed a cameo but both he and Shakib (66) failed to get past an ecstatic Dinesh Karthik in the inner-circle against Pandya (three for 60). Incidentally, Karthik had stepped in for Kedar Jadhav in the playing eleven.

World Cup 2019 semifinals qualification scenario

Among the rest, Sabbir Rahman and Mohammad Saifuddin (51 n.o.) fought with gusto but their 66-run seventh-wicket partnership only delayed the inevitable loss as Bumrah (four for 55) unleashed his yorkers.

Earlier, the morning lyrically stirred to two national anthems written by one man - Rabindranath Tagore, and then openers Rohit and Rahul displayed urgency. Once Rohit hoisted Mortaza for six in the first over, the template was set. Rohit enjoyed a reprieve too on nine as his miscued pull off Mustafizur Rahman (five for 59), eluded Tamim.

Rohit immediately launched a glorious six off Saifuddin as the seamers were put to the sword. Rahul joined the act, dabbing and driving splendidly. There was a brief lull when Shakib came on from the 11th over. The left-arm spinner’s accuracy paused Rohit but the opener broke free as he pulled a six.

WATCH: Rohit slams record fourth hundred in World Cup 2019

Rahul then clattered Mortaza’s half-volley over long-on and off-spinner Mosaddek Hossain gaped as Rohit launched one into the skies and it took a while before gravity reclaimed the ball. The centurion’s appetite got bigger with every second and when he lofted Mustafizur for a six that blended timing and panache, the shot’s beauty was jaw-dropping.

Mortaza swapped his seven bowlers but nothing worked. Rubel Hossain was punished though his steep bounce surprised Rahul. India’s other scare happened when Rohit on 98, nearly edged Shakib onto his stumps. But the batsman reached his ton without fuss and allowed himself a flourish. He threw his bat with a twirl, caught it and acknowledged the applause.

 

Rohit, however, couldn’t last long and holed out with a tame loft off Sarkar. The openers by then had shared a 180-run partnership and as it usually happens after the conclusion of a massive alliance, another wicket fell with Rahul edging Rubel. Meanwhile, Kohli drove with aplomb but fell to Mustafizur. Two deliveries later, Pandya edged the left-arm seamer and India was placed at 237 for four in the 39th over.

Pant, though, kept the scoreboard ticking as he swept and whipped. However, he succumbed to Shakib and Karthik also retreated. M.S. Dhoni chipped in some runs until the last over meltdown against Mustafizur during which the former Indian captain, Bhuvneshwar and Shami perished while a mere three was added. Still, India had just about enough in its kitty.