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Rohit, SKY right the wrongs of Adelaide in Guyana

Last updated on 27 Jun 2024 | 07:55 PM
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Rohit, SKY right the wrongs of Adelaide in Guyana

The duo added 73 off 50 balls for the third wicket that pinned England on the back foot

Opportunities don’t knock on the door twice. 

When India played England in the 2022 T20 World Cup semi-final, two batters came under extreme scrutiny. Rohit Sharma scored a laborious 27 off 28 balls. He tried to strike boundaries but couldn’t time the ball on that dreaded night in Adelaide. Suryakumar Yadav, who scored 14 off 10 balls, rubbed cricket fans the wrong way. A narrative was built that he doesn’t score against big teams in big games. 

Fast forward to 2024, India are playing England again in the succeeding edition of the T20 World Cup. It is a terrific opportunity to right the wrongs of Adelaide. And Rohit and Surya pounced on it with both hands. 

Rohit scored a well-paced 57 off 39 balls. On the other end, Surya debunked the harsh narrative, with a 36-ball 47. 

Moreover, they forged the partnership of the innings, adding 73 off 50 balls on a two-paced wicket in Guyana. Their stand was the foundation on which India put 171 on the board in their 20 overs, three runs more than they did on a much better batting track in Adelaide. 

The duo got together in the sixth over when Rishabh Pant was out for 4, with India’s score reading 40/2. It was a decent start but a lot was left to be done, like taking on Adil Rashid and the other England spinners. 

However, four balls were still left in the powerplay and Surya cashed on it with a boundary down the ground on the penultimate ball. 

Rohit then welcomed Rashid into the attack with a fine reverse sweep for four. Three balls later, he went for the orthodox sweep for another four, thus throwing the leg-spinner off his plans. 

The partnership was up and running. 

When the rain break interrupted play after the eighth over, Surya had added a six to the innings, with the partnership reading 25 off 16 balls. 

“It is a good break for England,” assessed many cricket experts at that point as Rohit-Surya had injected momentum into the innings. 

Post the break, the pair didn’t show any sign of their rhythm being disrupted. However, the England bowlers were certainly not on the money. Rashid bowled a couple of rank full tosses in the 10th over, one of which Surya easily swept away for a four. 

In the next over, when Liam Livingstone bowled five good deliveries in a row, Rohit struck a six down the ground to make it 8 off the over. 

Rashid bowled a good follow-up over, conceding only 5. So, in the next over, when the pace came on, Surya and Rohit combined to hit three boundaries against Sam Curran – two sixes and a four. 

Thus, despite respecting the conditions and the good deliveries, both Mumbaikars kept up the tempo. The second six off Curran’s over brought Rohit’s fifty as well. It is the 32nd fifty of Rohit’s T20I career. In this World Cup, he notched up his third half-century. After a blistering 92 against Australia, Rohit clicked again with a judicious knock. 

The Indian skipper was eventually castled by Rashid’s googly in the 14th over for 57 off 39 balls. Surya carried for a couple of more overs before being holed out for 47 from 36. In their partnership, both batters scored at a strike rate of around 145, ensuring that the pressure stayed on England and the mistakes of 2022 were not repeated. 

Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja and Axar Patel added 50 runs between them in 28 balls to build on the work done by Rohit and Surya. On a pitch where everyone suggested 160 as a par total, India scored a few extra runs. It was in stark contrast with 2022 where India were deemed a few runs short. 

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