Hardik Pandya starred with the ball and the bat as India defeated Pakistan by 5 wickets in the second match of the ongoing Asia Cup 2022 on August 28, 2022, at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium in UAE.
Rohit Sharma won the toss and chose to field first. India preferred Dinesh Karthik as the keeper over Rishabh Pant, while for Pakistan Naseem Shah made his T20I debut. Virat Kohli created a record by becoming the first Indian to play 100 or more matches in all three formats of the game and the second Indian to play 100 T20Is.
Chasing 148 runs to win the match and get some kind of payback for the defeat of T20 World Cup 2021, India started off badly as KL Rahul was bowled by debutant Naseem Shah. Rohit Sharma (12) and Virat Kohli (35) did well for a bit before Mohammad Nawaz removed both of them.
Suryakumar Yadav also perished for 18 runs and it all came down to Hardik Pandya and Ravindra Jadeja to take India to the win in the last over. Ravindra Jadeja (35) and Hardik Pandya (33* in 17 balls) 52 runs for the 5th wicket to bring victory to India with 5 wickets in hand.
This included Pandya hitting Haris Rauf for 14 runs in the 19th over and then hitting Nawaz for a six to win the match for India. He had also picked three wickets earlier to help India keep Pakistan to 147 runs.
Even If We Needed 15, I’d Have Fancied Myself: Hardik Pandya
Earlier, Bhuvneshwar Kumar picked 4/26, the best figures by an Indian bowler against Pakistan, as the Men in Green struggled from the start. Even top-scorer Mohammad Rizwan made 45 in 43 balls with Iftikhar Ahmed making 28 and Shahnawaz Dahani making 16 runs.
He was rightly named the Player of the Match and after receiving his award, he said: “In bowling, it’s important to assess the situations and use your weapons. For me, bowling short and the hard lengths have been my strengths. It’s about using them well and asking the right questions to make the batters commit a mistake. In a chase like this, you always plan over-by-over. I always knew that there is one young bowler and also one left-arm spinner. We only needed 7 off the last over but even if we needed 15, I’d have fancied myself. I know the bowler is under more pressure than me in the 20th over. I try to keep things simple.”
India will face Hong Kong on Wednesday in their next match.
Also Read: India vs Pakistan: Virat Kohli Becomes 1st Indian, Overall 2nd Cricketer To Play 100 Matches In All 3 Formats Of The Game