India beat Pakistan by six runs in thrilling T20 Cricket World Cup match in New York


India beat Pakistan in dramatic fashion in their T20 Cricket World Cup match in New York, despite setting their biggest rivals a target of just 120 runs at the Nassau County International Cricket Stadium.

Haris Rauf and Naseem Shah both bowled well for Pakistan in slippery conditions after morning rain in New York, each taking three wickets as India were bowled out for just 119 runs in 19 overs. It was their lowest-ever run total in a men’s T20 Cricket World Cup match, which is the shorter format of the sport where each team has one innings of up to 20 overs (an over is six balls).

Pakistan looked in cruise control on Long Island as they chased that modest target to win the match, clocking up 73 runs in 12 overs at the expense of only two wickets.

But then they collapsed, just days after losing their second match of the tournament to the United States in Grand Prairie, Texas.

Jasprit Bumrah led India’s fightback, taking three wickets for only 14 runs as Rohit Sharma’s team battled their way to victory. Pakistan needed 18 runs to win off the final over of the game but could only score 11 as they fell six runs short. They finished 113-7 after 20 overs.

More than 400 million people worldwide were expected to tune in to watch the game between the two best-supported cricketing nations. Matches between the two countries are rare due to geopolitical tensions and they do not collaborate outside of International Cricket Council events.

So the New York crowd were always going to be in for a treat. Tickets were made available at the start of February and such was the scale of demand, the number of people who wanted a seat was more than 200 times the stadium’s 34,000 capacity. It led to a hike in prices, with secondary resale markets, depending on the website, offering tickets between $600 and $1200 (£470 and £620). The official attendance on Sunday was 34,028.

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(Alex Davidson-ICC/ICC via Getty Images)

A predominantly India-supporting crowd created a raucous atmosphere and there were huge celebrations when Arshdeep Singh took the final wicket.

The India captain Sharma said his team’s batting was poor, but their resilience allowed them to battle back in front of an inspiring crowd.

“I think we didn’t bat well enough,” he said. “Halfway through when we were batting, we were in a good position, 80-3, you’d expect guys to stitch the partnerships. We didn’t, we fell short, we were 15 runs short. We looked at 140 but the bowlers did the job.

“There was enough in the pitch, it was a good wicket. Hence we thought 130/140 was a good target and with our bowling line-up, you feel confident. It is the never-say-die attitude in the team. We wanted to make early inroads and they did. We said if things can happen to us, it can happen to them.”

He described Bumrah as “a genius with the ball” and said India want him “to be in that mindset for the whole World Cup”.

He was full of praise for the support they received from Indian fans in the stands. “There is no doubt about it, the crowd was superb,” he said. “They never disappoint, wherever we play in the world. They always come out in huge support. It is just the start of the tournament, we have a long way to go.”

The result means India are extremely likely to qualify for the Super Eight phase, another round-robin stage before the semi-finals. India will face the USA, then Canada, and need just one victory to ensure qualification.

Likewise, the USA will require just one more win (or the one point gained for an abandoned fixture) from their two games against Ireland and India to qualify for the next stage of the competition should Canada fail to beat India. This is the first time the USA have competed in the T20 World Cup.

T20 World Cup Group A standings

Team Played Won Lost Tied No result Run rate Points

1

India

2

2

0

0

0

1.455

4

2

USA

2

2

0

0

0

0.626

4

3

Canada

2

1

1

0

0

-0.274

2

4

Pakistan

2

0

2

0

0

-0.15

0

5

Ireland

2

0

2

0

0

-1.712

0

Cricket is the second-most popular sport on earth, with more than one billion fans — and research by the ICC indicated that India supporters constitute 90 per cent of the overall figure.

(Top photo: Alex Davidson-ICC/ICC via Getty Images)



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