In a pulsating contest typical of any encounter between the arch
rivals, Pakistan beat India by five wickets in the first T20 tie
in a jam-packed Chinnaswamy stadium here late Tuesday.
Chasing a modest target of 134 runs, Pakistan registered its first
victory against India in a T20 series when Shoaib Malik got the
required six runs with a six in the 20th over, off Ravindra Jadeja.
Though Pakistan made a disastrous start losing three wickets in
the first three overs to a fiery spell by debutant pacer
Bhuvneshwar Kumar from Uttar Pradesh, captain Mohammed Hafeez and
Malik defied a spirited Indian attack to race towards the winning
post with a 106-run fourth wicket partnership.
India's hopes of containing Pakistan after man of the match Hafeez
was caught by Kumar off Ishant Sharma for 61 in the 18th over were
dashed as Malik remained at the wicket to see through the innings
with his 57 off 50 balls.
Dhoni's frantic attempts to break the Hafeez-Malik partnership
with a combination of pace and spin didn't succeed as the
experienced duo first settled down to open up in the middle overs
and steadied the innings towards a thrilling victory in the last
Ashoke Dinda and Sharma shared one wicket each.
Pakistan's star all-rounder Shahid Afrdi, who came to bat in the
last over after Kamran Akmal fell for one run in the 19th over,
remained unbeaten with 3.
Earlier, put to bat first after Hafeez won the toss, India
collapsed to a paltry 133 for 9 in the stipulated 20 over, as the
middle order and tail-enders failed to capitalise on the solid
start its openers Gautam Gambhir and Ajinkya Rahane gave with a
77-run partnership in the first 10 overs.
Making a cautious start, Gambhir (43 in 41 balls) and Rahane (42
in 31 balls) steadied the innings with quick running between the
wickets and posted the first 50 in 6.5 overs that included the
first six of the match by Gambhir.
Though Yuvraj Singh made a promising start by lifting Afridi for a
huge six of the first ball he faced, he didn't survive long to
contribute enough, as he was caught by Umar Akmal off Umar Gul's
ball for 10 runs in nine balls.
Dashing hopes of die-hard fans in putting up a defendable score
after a fine start, middle order batsmen Virat Kali (9), captain
M.S. Dhoni (1), Suresh Raina (10), Rohit Sharma (2) and Ravindra
Jadeja (2) fell like ninepins in a span of five overs, leaving
India reduced to 124 for 8 from 102 for 2.
For Pakistan, pacer Gul and spinner Saeed Ajmal were the most
successful bowlers as they snapped up 3 for 21 runs and 2 for 25
runs respectively, with Afridi and Mohammed Irfan sharing one
wicket each, while two (Gambhir and Sharma) were run out.
The second and last T20 will be played at Ahmedabad Dec 28.
Following is the score card of the
Gautam Gambhir run out (Tanvir/Kamran) 43
Ajnkya Rahane c Umar b Afridi 42
Virat Kohli c Kamran b Irfan 9
Yuvraj Singh c Umar b Gul 10
Mahendra Singh Dhoni b Ajmal 1
Suresh Raina b Ajmal 10
Rohit Sharma run out (Malik) 2
Ravindra Jadeja c Kamran b Gul 2
Bhuvaneshwar Kumar not out 6
Ishant Sharma b Gul 0
Ashok Dinda not out 3
Extras (lb 2, w 3) 5
Total (for nine wickets in 20 overs) 133
Fall of wickets: 1-77 (Rahane, 10.5 overs), 2-90 (Gambhir, 12.4),
3-103 (Kohli, 14.3), 4-108 (Dhoni, 15.1), 5-115 (Yuvraj, 16.2),
6-122 (Raina, 17.3), 7-123 (Rohit, 17.4), 8-124 (Jadeja, 18.1),
9-124 (Ishant, 18.2)
Mohammad Irfan 4-0-25-1
Sohail Tanvir 4-0-22-0
Umar Gul 3-0-21-3
Saeed Ajmal 4-0-25-2
Shahid Afridi 3-0-26-1
Mohammad Hafeez 2-0-12-0
Nasir Jamshed b Kumar 2
Ahmed Shehzad c Dhoni b Kumar 5
Mohammad Hafeez c Kumar b Ishant 61
Umar Akmal b Kumar 0
Shoaib Malik not out 57
Kamran Akmal c Ishant b Dinda 1
Shahid Afridi not out 3
Extras (lb 1, w 3, nb 1) 5
Total (for five wickets in 19.4 overs) 134
Fall of wickets: 1-2 (Nasir Jamshed, 0.6 overs), 2-11 (Ahmed
Shehzad, 2.2), 3-12 (Umar Akmal, 2.6), 4-118 (Mohammad Hafeez,
17.1), 5-123 (Kamran Akmal, 18.5)
Bhuvaneshwar Kumar 4-0-9-3
Ashok Dinda 4-0-26-1
Ishant Sharma 4-0-23-1
Virat Kohli 2-0-21-0
Yuvraj Singh 3-0-25-0
Ravindra Jadeja 2.4-0-29-0
Toss: Pakistan, who chose to field
Result: Pakistan won by five wickets, led the 2-match series 1-0
Player of the Match: Mohammad Hafeez (Pakistan)
Umpires: S. Ravi and C. Shamsuddin
TV umpire: VA Kulkarni
Match referee: Roshan Mahanama (Sri Lanka)