T20 World Cup 2021: India beats Namibia as Kohli ends captaincy tenure with win

T20 World Cup 2021: The nine-wicket win meant Virat Kohli also ended his reign as the T20I captain with India finishing third in its group of six teams.

The early exit from the T20 World Cup means India’s cricketers will get a rare eight-day break ahead of its next assignment, the T20I series versus New Zealand that starts on November 17.   -  GETTY IMAGES

India gave head coach Ravi Shastri a parting gift with a convincing win against qualifier Namibia to end its disappointing ICC T20 World Cup campaign with a smile.

The nine-wicket win meant Virat Kohli also ended his reign as the T20I captain with India finishing third in its group of six teams. The victory was yet again set up by spin twins Ravindra Jadeja (3/16) and Ravichandran Ashwin (3/20). The experienced duo’s combined figures of six for 36 off eight overs meant Namibia, despite adding 37 in the last four overs, could only manage 132 for eight after being inserted by Kohli.

HIGHLIGHTS

Rohit Sharma (56, 37b,7x4, 2x6), who was informally unveiled as the next T20I captain by Kohli during the post-toss chat, then made a mockery of the African bowling attack. Rohit and K.L. Rahul’s (54, 36b, 4x4, 2x6) 86-run partnership off just 59 balls meant India completed a crushing victory with 28 balls to spare.

 

READ: 'Relief' for Kohli as he signs off as India T20I captain

With Kohli sacrificing his No. 3 slot yet again, Suryakumar Yadav joined Rahul after Rohit’s attempted heave resulted in a to-edge to the wicketkeeper. Three balls after Rahul completed a classy fifty, the opener finished the game off with a four through mid-off off left-arm pacer Michael van Lingen.

READ: Rohit is looking over things for a while now: Kohli hints at his "successor"

Had Rohit not been dropped at short fine-leg before opening his account, the loyal supporters who turned up at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium in numbers may well have had a glimpse of Kohli, the batter.

The result of Monday night’s game had no bearing on the tournament since Pakistan and New Zealand had already qualified for the semifinals from India’s group.

Still, Ashwin and Jadeja showed their skills yet again despite Rahul Chahar, the leggie, going wicket-less in his maiden appearance in the World Cup.

READ: Players were physically, mentally drained, we didn't even try as there was no X-factor: Shastri

Jasprit Bumrah was clinical as ever at the start and the death but Mohammed Shami faced a late charge from Jan Frylinck and Ruben Trumplemann at the end.

Despite Rohit and Rahul combining their wristwork with raw power in plenty, the short of the day came from Namibia opener Stephen Baard. The right-hander walked down the pitch in the third over and whipped Bumrah over wide long-on for a six to cherish for his life.

READ: Rohit Sharma becomes third male batter to reach 3000 T20I runs

Once the spinners came on, Baard missed a sweep off Jadeja to be trapped lbw and Ashwin then broke the back of Namibia’s middle-order. Jadeja and Ashwin proved to be too good for the lesser experienced Namibians to skittle it to 94 for seven.

The early exit from the T20 World Cup means India’s cricketers will get a rare eight-day break ahead of its next assignment, the T20I series against New Zealand that starts on November 17.

For more updates, follow Sportstar on :