Rohit powers India to victory over Bangladesh in Asia Cup opener


India recovered from a poor start to cruise to a 45-run victory over Bangladesh in Wednesday’s Asia Cup opener thanks to 83 from Rohit Sharma in Mirpur.

Having been put into bat, India quickly slumped to 42-3 but Rohit – who received good support from Hardik Pandya (31) – held firm to lead India to a total of 166-6 from their 20 overs with a superb 55-ball innings


Bangladesh lost both opening batsman inside the first four overs and never came close to reaching the target, being restricted to 121-7.

Al-Amin Hossain (3-37) struck for Bangladesh with the ninth delivery of the match, removing Shikhar Dhawan (2) with an excellent swinging delivery before Virat Kohli (8) was dismissed by Mashrafe Mortaza (1-40) three overs later.

Suresh Raina (13) fell victim to Mahmudullah (1-9) on a particularly green pitch but Bangladesh spurned a golden chance to dismiss Rohit, who was dropped in the 11th over by Shakib Al Hasan and – after putting on 55 with Yuvraj Singh (15) – combined brilliantly with Pandya for 61.

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Pandya justified his promotion to number six ahead of MS Dhoni with a prolific innings that featured four boundaries and a six in the space of 11 balls.

By the time Rohit – who struck seven fours and three maximums – and Pandya had been removed in the final over, the damage had been done and India had compiled a competitive total.

In response, Bangladesh soon showed signs of frailty. Ashish Nehra (3-23) dismissed Mohammad Mithun (1) and Soumya Sarkar went for just 11 to the bowling of Jasprit Bumrah (1-23).

Sabbir Rahman (44) threatened to keep Bangladesh in the game but the wickets continued to tumble around him.

Pandya (1-23) eventually did for Sabbir and Nehra subsequently claimed the wickets of Mahmudullah (7) and Mashrafe (0) to leave Bangladesh on 100-7 with 20 balls remaining and all but end the match as a contest.

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