The India-Pakistan encounter at Adelaide produced some fascinating cricket while not completely living up to the expectations of it being a humdinger. Here’s a look at some important numbers related to the match which India will remember with a lot of fondness.
When he hit a century, Virat Kohli became the first Indian batsman to score a hundred in a World Cup game against Pakistan. Sachin Tendulkar’s memorable 98 at Centurion in 2003 was the previous best by an Indian against Pakistan in the World Cup.
Rather unusually, Kohli scored his runs a much less a run a ball. He faced 126 deliveries for his 107, and his eight fours during his stay at the crease.
During the course of the match, Shikhar Dhawan registered only his second international fifty since arriving in Australia. Dhawan had hit 81 in the second Test against Australia at Brisbane. He made 73 from 76 balls before being run out. Dhawan also got a half-century against Australia recently, but in the warm-up game.
Pakistan’s Sohail Khan finished with 5 for 55 in the game. This was the second consecutive India-Pak World Cup match in which a Pakistan bowler claimed five wickets, and yet hit side ended up on the losing side. Left-arm pacer Wahab Riaz, who was part of Sunday’s match, had claimed a five-for in the 2011 semi-final at Mohali.
The win was India’s sixth World Cup win against Pakistan in as many attempts, meaning Pakistan are yet to open their account in World Cups against their arch-rivals. India’s previous triumphs against Pakistan in the World Cup came in Sydney (1992), Bangalore (1996), Manchester (1999), Centurion (2003) and Mohali (2011).
Except for the 2003 encounter at Centurion, when India won chasing thanks to the brilliance of Sachin Tendulkar, all of India’s other wins have been registered batting first. The victory margin of 76 runs at Adelaide is also the highest for India of the five times they have batted first.
Pakistan skipper Misbah-ul-Haq extended his record of having hit most ODI fifties without having scored a hundred. Sunday’s 76 from 84 balls was the Pakistan skipper’s 39th one-day half-century.
The one disappointing aspect for India in the game was their batting performance in the last five overs. In spite of being in a great position to launch an assault on the Pakistan bowlers, India only managed 27 runs for the loss of five wickets in their last five overs.
Indian off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin had a mixed match. Although he bowled three maidens in eight overs, he ended up conceding 41 runs, which effectively means he went at more than eight an over in the other five overs that he sent down.
Before this match, India had only registered one century partnership against Pakistan in the World Cup – 102 between Sachin Tendulkar and Mohammad Kaif at Centurion. At Adelaide, Dhawan and Kohli added 129 for the second wicket and Kohli and Raina put on 110 for the third wicket.
--By A Cricket Analyst