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ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021, Day 8 : Pakistan’s big victory over India after Sri Lanka’s triumph over Bangladesh

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On Day 8 of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021, we had two heavy-weight all-Asian clashes. It started off with the Sri LankaBangladesh match up and was followed by the El-Classico of cricket – India vs Pakistan. However, it was a day for records to be broken. After 12 consecutive victories over Pakistan in the World Cups, India finally lost. The day can be summed up by Pakistan’s big victory over India after Sri Lanka’s triumph over Bangladesh. Sri Lanka and Pakistan opened their Super 12 account, scripting sensational wins over their Asian counterparts Bangladesh and India respectively, to get two points each on the board. Here are the Talking Points from the game.

See Also: T20 World Cup 2021: Match 15, SL vs BAN – Who Said What

INDIA v PAKISTAN

When Shaheen Afridi has the new ball in his hand, it is almost inevitable that he will strike with it. The batters know what to expect, yet are often left to look clueless. Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul were left bamboozled by Afridi as India were reduced to 6/2. Afridi breathed fire in his opening spell. In the first over of the game, he yorked Rohit with a peach of in-swinger. It trapped Rohit plumb, as plumb can be. In the next over, he cramped Rahul for room and did him for pace. The ball went through the gates with the same in-swing and hitting timber.

If that wasn’t enough, he came back in the death and scalped Virat Kohli. This ensured he did no further damage in the last over. The openers of New Zealand, Afghanistan, Namibia and Scotland would have watched the game closely. They will have to be wary of Shaheen in the upcoming matches.

Pakistan broke the jinx over India after a commanding victory
Pakistan broke the jinx over India after a commanding victory

Pakistan’s big victory over India after Sri Lanka’s triumph over Bangladesh sums up the Day 8 of ICC T20 Men’s World Cup 2021 :

Both the captains scored sensational half-centuries but it was Babar Azam‘s that contributed to the winning cause. Batting first, Virat Kohli’s inning ensured that the Indian batting doesn’t collapse after they were down to 6/2 and then 31/3. With Pant, he strung a 53-run partnership as India took control of the middle overs. He then went on to score his half-century. It was his 29th T20I fifty for India and his 10th in T20 World Cups. Babar Azam, along with Mohammad Rizwan, was a man on a mission chasing 152. He took time to get into the groove. But once he got his eye, he took the game away from India with a typical, well-paced fifty and carried his bat as Pakistan made history.

See Also: T20 World Cup 2021: Match 14, ENG vs WI – Who Said What

It was a day to rejoice for Pakistan fans as they finally broke the World Cup jinx against India that started all the way back in 1992. And they did in style, in what was a one-sided canter that saw them thump India by 10 wickets. They handed the Men in Blue their first-ever 10-wicket loss in T20Is. Before this game, India were undefeated in the World Cup, both 50-over and 20-over, against Pakistan, leading 12-0 against Pakistan. Babar Azam and his men, however, will be well aware that they have four more games left in the Super 12. But a dominating win of this nature is sure to give them huge confidence.

SRI LANKA v BANGLADESH

Sri Lanka qualified for the Super 12s largely thanks to the brilliance of their well-balanced bowling attack. And that combination of high pace and mystery spin will worry every opponent in Group 1. But on this occasion, it wasn’t the bowlers who made the difference for Sri Lanka. Bangladesh made the attack toil a little. Mushfiqur Rahim and Mohammad Naim’s half-centuries helping build a competitive tall of 171/4. But Sri Lanka’s new number three Charith Asalanka stepped up with a fluid knock of 80* off 49 balls. He steered his nation to victory and their highest successful run chase in a T20 World Cup. Credit too to the big-hitting birthday boy Bhanuka Rajapaksa. Rajapaksa powered 53 off 31 just when the required rate looked in danger of getting out of control.

Sri Lanka defeated Bangladesh to open their Super 12 campaign in style
Sri Lanka defeated Bangladesh to open their Super 12 campaign in style | Twitter

Sri Lanka is ticking all the boxes as the Day 8 ends with Pakistan’s big victory over India after Sri Lanka’s triumph over Bangladesh :

On the day he turned 30, Rajapaksa showed glimpses of the talent that earned him international recognition, banging three maximums in his quickfire half-century. Tempers were stretched to breaking point and there were plenty of nerves in the field in Sharjah, and for good reason. This first game of both teams’ Super 12 campaigns could prove pivotal to the outcome of Group 1. The six teams in the group appear relatively evenly matched, with West Indies looking vulnerable through their warm-up games and the opening fixture against England, and Australia and South Africa showing enough weaknesses to suggest both Sri Lanka and Bangladesh had legitimate hope of reaching the semi-finals.

But getting off to a winning start in the Super 12 stage always going to be crucial, and the stunning partnership between Asalanka and Rajapaksa to get Sri Lanka over the line has given them a real chance to get into that final four next month. Despite defeat, Bangladesh put in a very decent showing with bat and ball, with big names Mushfiqur Rahm and Shakib Al Hasan delivering excellent individual performances. But the Tigers will look back at this game with regret over their quality, or lack of it, in the field.

Sri Lanka were in a spot of bother when they lost three for eight in the middle of the innings, and that flurry of wickets could have turned into a winning spell for Bangladesh if they’d backed it up in the field. But two drops in the deep from Liton Das handed lifelines to Charith Asalanka and Bhanuka Rajapaksa, and the pair made Das and Bangladesh pay.

Pakistan's big victory over India after Sri Lanka's triumph over Bangladesh
Pakistan’s big victory over India after Sri Lanka’s triumph over Bangladesh
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