Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul combined for a blistering 140-run opening stand Wednesday, as India racked up the highest score in this year’s T20 World Cup and finally won their first game, beating Afghanistan by 66 runs.
Rohit smashed 74 off 47 balls, and Rahul made 69 off 48 deliveries in India’s mammoth total of 210-2 after captain Virat Kohli lost his third successive toss and was asked to bat first, reports AP.
Hardik Pandya (35 not out) and Rishabh Pant (27 not out) provided a brisk finish by hammering 65 runs in the last four overs as Afghanistan’s premier bowler Rashid Khan returned with a rare unimpressive figure of 0-36.
Afghanistan never looked likely to come close before finishing on 144-7 to lose its second game in four matches.
Ravichandran Ashwin, playing his first game of the tournament, picked up 2-14 and buckled Afghanistan in the middle overs with fellow spinner Ravindra Jadeja.
Karim Janat, who reached 1,000 runs in T20 internationals, remained unbeaten on 42 off 22 balls to narrow the margin of defeat.
India lost to archrival Pakistan by 10 wickets and to New Zealand by eight wickets before its top-order batsmen finally came good in the third Group 2 game.
Despite the big win, India’s slim chance to progress into the semifinals depends on whether they can beat Scotland and Namibia by big margins while other results also go in their favour.