Match summary: Clinical win for India against the Netherlands
India produced a clinical display to beat the Netherlands by 56 runs in a one-sided Group 2 contest at the Sydney Cricket Ground on Thursday. Skipper Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli and Suryakumar Yadav scored half-centuries to guide India to 179 for two in the 20 overs after seeing off some impressive bowling from the Dutch.
Indian skipper won the toss and elected to bat, but the first 10 overs did not go according to plan. The Dutch, after dismissing opener KL Rahul, made life difficult for the two experienced campaigners, Rohit and Kohli.
Rohit Shama, capitalising on the dropped chance, played some bold shots and it helped keep the scoreboard ticking. India managed only 67/1 in the first 10 overs. Rohit Sharma was dismissed off the last ball of the 12th over. The floodgates opened with the arrival of Suryakumar Yadav, who put on 95 runs for the third wicket in eight overs.
Chasing a stiff target 180 on a wicket that has considerably slowed (South Africa played Bangladesh on the same pitch, earlier in the day), Indian bowlers used the double pace to good effect, not giving too many boundaries in the first 15 overs. In search of the big shots, against a mounting asking rate, the Dutch batters succumbed to the guiles of the Indian bowlers.
Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Arshdeep Singh, Ravichandran Ashwin and Axar Patel bagged two wickets each to restrict the Netherlands to 123 for nine in 20 overs. The Dutch struck only 10 boundaries, three of which came in the last three balls, and a six.
The class is different and the quality is different. Still the Netherlands gave a good account of themselves and the Associate Nation kept the famed Indian batting in check for most part of the innings, but up against class batters like Kohli and Suryakumar Yadav, the battle-hardened players, it was a difficult task towards the final stages of the innings and allowed the Indians the space to make merry and take the score to 179 for two in 20 overs. The Dutch could leave with their heads held high.
The Netherlands finish at 123/9
India won by 56 runs as the Netherlands managed only 123/9 runs in 20 overs, chasing a total of 179.
India set to achieve a big win
Tim Pringle, the son of former New Zealand pacer Chris Pringle, briefly succeeded in breaking the shackles, scoring 20 off 15 balls that included one six and a four, but there is no intent from the other end. The 20-year-old was out, caught by Kohli off Shami, reducing the Netherlands to 96/7 in 17 overs. Pringle has been impressive throughout the World Cup, and gave away just 30 runs in his four overs today. The match is as good as over for the Netherlands as only Scott Edwards, who had waged a lone battle, tried too many shots against Bhuveshwar and was out, caught by Hooda. India are set to achieve a big win that will boost their run rate. Another youngster, Shariz Ahmed, the 19-year-old leg-spinner who just bowled one over giving just five runs, is another interesting prospect for the Netherlands.
Ashwin twin strike deepens Netherlands’ woes
Netherland's batters are living dangerously. They tried to break the shackles, but the guile of Indian bowlers were too much to handle. Talented and experienced batters like skipper Tom Cooper and Ackermann could not time their shots. The dot balls continue to mount. After a few missed opportunities, Ashwin finally found twin success when Ackermann and Cooper finally got some bat to the ball, but only to find Axar Patel and Deepak Hooda taking easy catches. After 13 overs, the Netherlands are 64/5.
Netherlands are 51/3 after 10 overs
Batting has not been the Netherlands’ strong point, and it is once again hurting them. The lack of urgency at the start is increasing the required rate, which is currently hovering around 13 an over, and that in turn will add more pressure on the batters. With no intent to attack, the fielders will be 10 yards inside the boundary, which makes it difficult for them to run the extra run. The only way is to attack, and all-rounder Colin Ackermann survived a stumping chance off Axar, but the Indian left-arm spinner struck in the next over, having Bad de Leede caught at point. For almost six overs, the Netherlands could not score a single boundary, that says a lot about the tight Indian bowling. After 10 overs, the Netherlands are 51 for three.
Indian bowlers tighten screws on Dutch batters
The Dutch innings have not taken off, and the Indian pacers have really kept the bowling tight, not giving any room for the Netherlands batters to maintain the run rate required to chase the stiff target of 180 in 20 overs. Veteran pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar kept the Dutch batters guessing while getting a wicket in his two overs without conceding a run.
Axar Patel too hit the stumps to dismiss opener Max O’Dowd, who scored an unbeaten 71 against Sri Lanka in Round One. After six overs (powerplay), the Netherlands are 27 for two, scoring just three boundaries in the 36 balls with 21 dot balls. With five overs gone, India need not worry about the rain and the Duckworth-Lewis Method as they are way ahead now.
Midway summary: Yadav hits half-ton as India post 179/2
Suryakumar Yadav gave himself time to complete his 10th Twenty20 International half-century by hitting the last ball to six to take India to 179 for two in 20 overs. Teh Netherlands were on the verge of a perfect finish by restricting Kohli and Yadav in the last two overs, but Logan van Beek’s good spell came to a nought after conceding two sixes in the final three deliveries. Still, the Dutch could be proud of their efforts as they kept some of the best batsmen in check.
It will be difficult for the Netherlands to reach the target of 180. They will need a good start, which might not be easy against India's attack. The wicket has also slowed considerably and batting on the fourth innings on the day could be even more difficult for the Dutch. The clear skies also should make it easier for India, and if the Men in Blue could keep the Dutch quiet in the first five overs, then even if the rain stops play and Duckworth-Lewis Method comes into play, India could be ahead of the game.
Kohli remained unbeaten on 62, the second time the star Indian batter has remained unconquered in the World Cup so far, and Yadav was 51 not out. India have scored 65 runs in the last five overs without conceding a wicket. They could have posted a bigger score, but the Netherlands must have saved at least 15 runs on the field.
India finish at 179/2 in 20 overs
India race to 179/2 in 20 overs as Suryakumar Yadav brings up his half-century with a six off the last ball of the innings. He is unbeaten on 51 (25 ball) and Virat Kohli (62 off 44).
Kohli scores half-century as match slips away from the Dutch
The match is slowly slipping out of the Netherlands’ grasp. The boundaries are coming thick and fast as Suryakumar and Kohli are trying to play more on the ground and only trying to hit in the air on vacant areas. Still, 38 runs have come in the last two overs, and Kohli reached his 35th half-century, completing a back-to-back 50s. The last three overs should get in excess of 50 runs, which should take India’s total past the 190-run mark. After 17 overs, India are 144 for two with Kohli batting on 51 off 38 balls and Surya 27 (13).
India shifting gears after Rohit Sharma’s exit
India shift gears as they approach the 15-over mark. Rohit Sharma holed out to deep midwicket after completing his 29th half-century in Twenty20 Internationals. It is not one of the best innings from Sharma, but nevertheless the time spent in the centre would have given the strokemaker confidence for the next games. It has given Suryakumar Yadav, the in-form Indian batter, time to get his eye in and launch a 360-degree assault. After 14 overs, India are 106 for two with Kohli on 29 (27 balls) and Yadav 12 (6). The last five overs have yielded 54 runs.
Netherlands bowlers maintain their discipline
The Netherlands have done well in the first 10 overs, which certainly belonged to the Dutch, who had the upperhand right through the innings with disciplined bowling, backed by good fielding, barring a dropped chance. The ball is not coming onto the bat as well as it did at the start of the day when South Africa were batting, but still credit is to the Netherlands, who have rotated their bowlers and have employed as many as six bowlers in the 10 overs, not allowing the batters to settle down. Still, Rohit Sharma, who got another reprieve when he was given out but replays suggested there was an edge before the ball hit the pads, is looking dangerous and with him is Virat Kohli, who showed against Pakistan how quickly he could hit the overdrive. After 10 overs, India are 67 for one with Rohit on 42 and Kohli on a 16-ball 14.
Dropped chance could hurt Netherlands
The Netherlands' inexperience showed as after putting India under pressure, the Dutch let the opportunity slip when skipper Rohit Sharma was dropped off the last ball of the fifth over when he was on 15. The wicket of Rohit, after getting KL Rahul early, could have pushed India on the backfoot. Still, the Dutch bowlers have not given too many loose deliveries for the Indians to run away to a brisk start and have kept tidy with disciplined bowling. After six overs, India are 32 for one. Indian opener Rahul failed to make the most of the opportunity and once again left early, this time trapped in front. Rahul desperately needs to spend more time in the middle as otherwise he will become an extra burden in the latter stages of the World Cup. The next game could be crucial as Rahul will be up against the South African pacers in Perth on Sunday, which should work in his favour as he likes the ball to come onto the bat more quickly.
Both teams retain their squads
Indian skipper Rohit Sharma has won the toss and decided to bat against Netherlands in a match that was delayed due to the late finish of the previous match between Bangladesh and South Africa. However, the rain threat has now abated and a shiny, bright skies welcomed both the teams as they line-up for the national anthems. Both teams have retained the same squad. The wicket, after watching the previous match, is a pretty good batting surface and stays true throughout the innings, giving the batters the freedom to play through the line.
Preview: Chance for openers Rohit and Rahul to get into groove
Buoyed by the scintillating win over Pakistan, India will be eager to stamp their authority on Netherlands when the two teams meet in Sydney, where a rain threat always loom large in the Group 2 game on Thursday.
The Men in Blue ticked almost all the boxes against Pakistan, though fielding, especially the catching, is an area of concern for the Rohit Sharma-led team. The stunning knock from Virat Kohli, who is the lynchpin in the batting at No 3, will be a big boost to the confidence of the Indian team.
The form of openers Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul will be key going forward. A good start utilizing the field restrictions will give the rest of the batters to play their shots freely. India could also give players like Hardik Pandya the rest and try Deepak Hooda. The move will allow Pandya the time to recuperate in the month-long event and stay fresh for bigger clashes, while on the other hand give Hooda the opportunity to be ready should his services are required at a later stage.
Should there be no rain interruption, India start an overwhelming favourites against the Netherlands, who could be richer with experience from this contest. However, India will eager to get the two points on offer to move closer to the semi-final spot.