Team India virtually out of Asia Cup
Zee Media Bureau/Chaitan Papnai
Mirpur: The veteran Pakistani all-rounder Shahid Afridi played a match-winning cameo to give Pakistan one wicket win over their arch-rivals India in a thriller on Sunday at Shere Bangla National Stadium, Mirpur. And with the second consecutive defeat in the five-national tournament, India`s hope to make it to the Asia Cup final has virtually ended.
In a do-or-die clash against Pakistan, Indian batsmen failed to put up a big total on the board when being offered to bat first and then their bowlers couldn`t stop Pakistani batsmen to chase the total successfully in a thriller.
Though Indian spinners bowled their heart and took the match till the last over, all their efforts went in vain as dangerous Afridi came to the rescue of Pakistan and played a blinder of 34 runs in mere 18 balls, studded with three sixes and two fours.
In the last over of the match Pakistan needed ten runs to seal the match. In the first ball of the over, Ashwin crashed into the stumps of Saeed Ajmal and gave India a slight edge. But when the 34-year -old, Afridi got the strike in the third ball he launched Ashwin for two consecutive sixes to end the match then and there.
After two defeats in three matches, India`s chances to reach the finals of Asia Cup are very bleak. Now India can only make it to the finals if, India beat Afghanistan with a big margin to earn that bonus point and Sri Lanka lose both their remaining league matches with Afghanistan and Bangladesh, which is highly unlikely. Last time India couldn`t manage to reach the finals of the event and this time too its almost impossible for them to reach that far. So, India`s poor run in the Asia Cup continues.