After India’s great display in the group stage of the T20 World Cup 2022, in which the team won four out of five games, there was great anticipation that the Rohit Sharma-led team could achieve ultimate glory. However, the campaign ended with a crushing 10-wicket loss to England in the semi-final on Thursday. Alex Hales and Jos Buttler produced a brilliant unbeaten half-century as England surpassed the 169-run target set by India. They will now face Pakistan in the final. Chasing 169 for victory in the second semi-final in Adelaide, Hales smashed seven sixes in his 86 and Buttler, who made 80, scored three in a spellbinding batting performance to enter Sunday’s final in Melbourne with four overs to spare.
After a slow start from India, while batting first, Hardik Pandya’s 33-ball 63 guided India to 168-6, but the total proved inadequate for an inspired opening pair as England chase their second T20 crown after their 2010 win. After the loss, Pandya wrote an emotional note on Twitter.
“Devastated, shattered, hurt. Hard for all of us to accept. To my teammates, I have enjoyed the bond we built – we fought for each other every step of the way. Thank you to our support staff for your endless dedication and I work hard for months,” tweeted Hardik Pandya.
Ravaged, gutted, wounded. Difficult to accept, for all of us. For my teammates, I enjoyed the bond we built – we fought for each other every step of the way. Thank you to our support staff for their endless dedication and hard work over the months. pic.twitter.com/HlVUC8BNq7
– hardik pandya (@hardikpandya7) November 10, 2022
Speaking of the England chase, skipper Buttler crushed Bhuvneshwar Kumar by three bounds at the opening of his chase and his side never looked back. He kept up the batting onslaught and Hales soon joined the big-hitting party as England raced to 63-0 in six overs.
Hales reached his 50 in 28 balls and was tough on Axar Patel, who leaked 28 runs in his three overs as the match was snatched away from India in a flurry of sixes and fours. Hales raised the team 100 with another six against Pandya and Buttler soon switched gears to catch up with his partner.
The skipper reached his fifties with a six and a four against Pandya to douse any hopes of India trying to end their world title drought since their 2013 Champions Trophy triumph. He appropriately hit the winning runs with a six against Mohammed Shami to set up a replay of the 1992 World Cup final over 50 between Pakistan and England, which was won by Pakistan.
With AFP inputs
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