Dhawan, Rohit just two good!
Dubai, September 23
Skipper Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan showed their mastery in white-ball cricket with stylish hundreds as India took a giant stride towards ensuring a berth in the final of the Asia Cup with a nine-wicket win against Pakistan.
Chasing a target of 238, Rohit (111*) and Dhawan (114) flayed the Pakistan attack, adding 210 runs for the opening stand to seal their second lopsided victory in the tournament in just 39.3 overs.
The Rohit-Dhawan combination was helped by some ordinary bowling from Pakistan with sloppy fielding compounding their woes.
Rohit’s first significant shot was a six off rookie pacer Shaheen Shah Afridi. Dhawan also gave the same treatment to a woefully out-of-form Mohammad Amir (0/41 in 5 overs). Dhawan’s 50 came off 56 balls with a boundary while Rohit took 65 balls to reach the milestone. However, after completing their fifties, it was a role reversal with the skipper suddenly shifting gears as he hit leg-spinner Shahdab Khan for two sixes over deep midwicket.
Dhawan reached his 15th hundred with a cover drive off Afridi and celebrated it with a huge six and a boundary before being run-out.
Rohit scampered home for a double to complete his 19th ton, also completing 7000 runs in the ODI format. By the time the match ended, Rohit had hit seven fours and four sixes.
Earlier, Pakistan produced an improved batting performance, led by Shoaib Malik, scoring 237/7 in 50 overs. Malik scored 78 off 90 balls and added 107 runs for the fourth wicket with skipper Sarfraz Ahmed (44) to enable Pakistan post a fighting total.