Former Pakistan cricketer Shoaib Akhtar is backing India to reach the semi-finals after the Men in Blue defeated Scotland by 8 wickets in the ICC T20 World Cup. After Team India’s impressive win, the former Pakistan pacer took to Twitter to praise the Virat Kohli-led team.
“World Cup becomes very interesting. It seems like India is heading closer to the miracle which looked impossible. New Zealand will be under a lot of pressure against Afghanistan. It will be a virtual quarter-final for them.”
The rout was started and finished by Jasprit Bumrah, who bowled captain Kyle Coetzer in a wicket maiden third over, and bowled Mark Watt to end Scotland’s innings and become India’s leading wicket-taker in T20s, eclipsing Yuzvendra Chahal’s 63.
Coetzer’s opening partner, George Munsey, responded by hitting three consecutive boundaries in Ravichandran Ashwin’s first over. But Munsey was gone for 24 after mistiming Mohammed Shami and falling to a diving catch by Hardik Pandya.
Ravindra Jadeja took the next three wickets to reduce Scotland to 58-5 in the 12th over.
“The first wicket was the special one,” Jadeja said. ”Whenever you get a batter out on a turning ball, it’s special.”
The 16th over bowled by Shami was eventful: In three consecutive deliveries, Calum McLeod’s off-stump was knocked off, new batsman Safyaan Sharif was run out too easily, and Alasdair Evans was yorked.
Bumrah took 2-10 and Jadeja and Shami 3-15 each.
India knew it could better the net run rate of its immediate group rivals if it reached the target within 7.1 overs.
Openers KL Rahul and Rohit Sharma made it look easy.