A clinical performance by New Zealand helped them register a comprehensive 52-run win against Namibia in an afternoon encounter at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium. After being asked to bat first, the Black Caps were jolted early in the innings as Martin Guptill was dismissed for 18. On a sluggish wicket, the Kiwis lost wickets at regular intervals and were reeling at 87/4 by the end of the 14th over. However, an unbeaten 76-run partnership for the fifth wicket between Glenn Phillips and Jimmy Neesham propelled New Zealand to a fighting total of 163/4 in the first innings. In reply, despite a steady start in the powerplay, the pressure of the run chase witnessed a flurry of wickets in the middle overs. Despite valuable contributions from Micheal van Lingen (25) and Zane Green (23), Namibia managed to reach 111/7 in their quota of 20 overs.
In a bid to boost their Net Run Rate, the Indian team produced a dominating performance in the evening encounter against Scotland at the Dubai International Stadium. After winning the toss, finally !! birthday boy Virat Kohli elected to field first. The bowling unit skittled the opposition for 85 runs courtesy of three wicket-hauls from Ravindra Jadeja and Mohammed Shami. With an aim to overhaul the Net Run Rate of Afghanistan and New Zealand, the opening combination of Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul stitched a 70-run partnership in five overs before the latter was dismissed by a well-executed yorker from Brad Wheal. Despite the stutter, Rahul kept attacking the Scotland bowlers and smashed his half-century off 18 deliveries to help the side register an eight-wicket win with 81 balls to spare. Here are a few notable stats from Match 36 & 37:
Phillips and Neeshem go berserk
After tottering at 84/4 in 14 overs, New Zealand were bailed out of a challenging situation courtesy of a sublime 76-run partnership by Phillips and Neesham. The duo steadied the innings and accumulated the one and twos before taking the attack to the bowling unit of Namibia. The right-handed batter was the aggressor of the two and smashed an unbeaten 39 off 21 balls studded with one four and three sixes. The pair attacked in the final five overs and scored 72 runs, which is the most by any team in this edition of the World Cup. Earlier in the league stage of the Super 12s, Pakistan scored 71 against the same opposition but lost the wicket of Fakhar Zaman, which is now second on this list.
A day to forget for Scotland
The quality showcased by the Indian bowlers wreaked havoc at the Dubai International Stadium as the Men in Blue produced a commanding performance to dismiss the opposition for 85 runs in the first innings. The below-par performance by Scotland is the second-lowest total by any team against India in the T20 World Cup. In the year 2012, England were all out for 80 at the Premadasa Stadium in Colombo, which is the lowest.
Bumrah tops the wickets charts for India
One of the most lethal bowlers in the shortest format of the game, Jasprit Bumrah became the leading bowler for the nation in T20Is with 64 wickets. The right-arm pacer achieved this feat by dismissing Mark Watt on the fourth ball of the 18th over with a well-directed yorker at the leg stump to finish with figures of 2/10. Yuzvendra Chahal is second on the list with 63 wickets, followed by Ravichandra Ashwin with 55 scalps.
India goes bang-bang in the powerplay
With an aim to give their Net Run Rate a massive boost and allow them a slight chance of reaching the semi-finals, India had to go all-guns blazing. Rahul and Rohit walked in to take center stage and provided more than what India asked for. The duo stitched a 70-run partnership in five overs before Rohit was undone by beauty from Wheal. However, Rahul kept the scoreboard ticking to ensure India amassed 82 before being dismissed of the last ball in the powerplay. This brutal display of power hitting propelled the side to register their best score in T20 International in the first six overs. In 2018, they smashed 78 for the loss of two wickets, which is their second-best.
Rahul gets India off to a flyer
One of the most elegant players in the white-ball format, Rahul displayed an array of strokes all around the ground en route to his knock of 50 in 19 deliveries. The right-handed batter smashed the second-fastest half-century for India in T20Is in 18 balls, which was studded with six boundaries and three sixes to power the Indian team to a massive win. Yuvraj Singh leads the table with a half-century off 12 deliveries in the inaugural edition of the competition against England in Durban.
Thumping win for India
A clinical display by the Indian team resulted in the Indian side clinching the game with a resounding eight-wicket win with 81 balls to spare. The victory is the largest for the side in regards to the ball remaining in this format of the game. In the year 2016, the team chased down a target of 82 runs in 10.1 overs to win by a margin of 59 balls against the United Arab Emirates in Dhaka. In addition, this is the third biggest win for a team in T20 WC. Sri Lanka against Kenya had won by a 90-ball margin in 2007 and Australia against Bangladesh in this edition won by a 82-ball margin win.
Rahul joins a special list
In the World Cup, Rahul's heroics with the bat enabled him to become the second batter after Stephan Myburg to score a half-century in the first six overs. In their league match against Ireland in the 2014 edition, the Dutch player smashed a half-century in 17 balls and ended up scoring 57 runs in the first six overs. To add more, among Indians in T20Is, he joined Rohit, who had scored 50 off 23 balls in the first six overs against New Zealand in 2020. He scored at a strike rate of 263.2, among Indians who have scored 25+ runs in this phase, only Shikhar Dhawan against Australia in 2016 had scored 26 runs at 288.9.