T20 World Cup: Bumrah delivers as India beat Pakistan in low-scoring thriller

Despite a tricky surface that made batting difficult, a crowd of 34,028, a record attendance for an international cricket match in the USA, were given a tight contest that ebbed and flowed.
India's Jasprit Bumrah celebrates after taking a wicket during the ICC men's T20 World Cup 2024 group A cricket match between India and Pakistan at Nassau County International Cricket Stadium in East Meadow, New York on June 9, 2024.
India's Jasprit Bumrah celebrates after taking a wicket during the ICC men's T20 World Cup 2024 group A cricket match between India and Pakistan at Nassau County International Cricket Stadium in East Meadow, New York on June 9, 2024. Photo | AFP

NEW YORK: Jasprit Bumrah was the hero as India beat Pakistan by six runs in a low-scoring T20 World Cup thriller in New York on Sunday.

India was bowled out by Pakistan for 119 in 19 overs but while Mohammad Rizwan made 31 for Pakistan, in a well-paced innings, Bumrah delivered crucial wickets and his 3-14 in four overs proved decisive as Pakistan fell just short ending on 113-7.

Despite a tricky surface that made batting difficult, a crowd of 34,028, a record attendance for an international cricket match in the USA, were given a tight contest that ebbed and flowed.

Pakistan needed exactly a run a ball and they approached their innings accordingly -- by engineering themselves into a position where they needed 40 to win off the last six overs but then were unable to deliver in the face of Bumrah's brilliance.

"Bumrah is going from strength to strength. I'm not going to talk too much about him, we want him to be in that kind of mindset till the end of this World Cup, he's a genius with the ball," said Indian captain Rohit Sharma, praising his team's fans, who had travelled from far and wide to back them.

"The crowd was superb, they never disappoint, wherever we play in the world, they come out in huge numbers and support us. They'll be going home with a big smile on their face as well. Just the start of the tournament, we have a long way to go," he added.

Bumrah had picked up the vital wicket of Pakistan captain Babar Azam (13) early and then the breakthrough dismissal of Mohammad Rizwan (31) in the 15th over when Pakistan were 80-4.

Then, handed the ball for the penultimate over, with Pakistan needing 21 to win, Bumrah conceded just three runs and removed Iftikhar Ahmed with his final delivery.

That left Pakistan needing 18 from the final over, a steep task on a difficult batting surface and it got more tricky when Arshdeep Singh trapped Imad Wasim lbw with the first ball.

Naseem Shah made a valiant effort, hitting the fourth and fifth balls of the over for fours but India avoided any late drama to secure their second win of the tournament.

India's Jasprit Bumrah celebrates after taking a wicket during the ICC men's T20 World Cup 2024 group A cricket match between India and Pakistan at Nassau County International Cricket Stadium in East Meadow, New York on June 9, 2024.
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For Pakistan, their loss, coming after the shock defeat to the USA, leaves them without a point and with a lot of work to do against Canada and Ireland if they are to fight their way into the Super Eight stage.

"We've still got a chance in the tournament, we get two wins, we've still got a chance to go through, so we're still hopeful that things can play in our hands, obviously we've got to play a lot better cricket than what we are playing," said Pakistan coach Gary Kirsten.

"We had that game for 35 of the 40 overs, we played good cricket, we did everything that we needed to, so it's a disappointing loss," he added.

Earlier, Pakistan's bowlers had given their team a fighting chance with Naseem and Haris Rauf claiming three wickets each as India were dismissed with a full over remaining of their alloted 20.

But Rishabh Pant's 42 from 31 balls gave the Indians something to work with after they lost openers Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli cheaply following a rain-delayed start.

Pakistan captain Babar won the toss and opted to bowl and their was a huge roar when Rohit clipped Shaheen Shah Afridi's third ball of the day over mid-wicket for six.

But after just one over, the rain returned forcing a 36-minute delay and when play resumed Pakistan's attack got the start they had dreamt of.

Naseem Shah removed Kohli with the the third ball back, the Indian opener reaching at a wide delivery and finding Usman Khan at point.

Rohit tried to put Afridi off the midwicket boundary again but this time he was caught by Rauf in the deep to leave India at 19-2 with both star openers gone.

But only 24 runs were added for the last five wickets and India lost their final wicket to a run out with six balls remaining.

That could have proved costly but Bumrah delivered when it mattered for a big win for the tournament favourites.

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