Champions Trophy 2017: Virat Kohli stars as India smash Pakistan


Left-arm fast bowler Wahab Riaz contributed to the team's loss against India in Champions Trophy by giving 87 runs, in 8.4 overs, with not a single wicket.

On Sunday, one of the most eagerly awaited matches of the tournament proved a damp squib in the end as India utterly dominated every aspect of a stop-start, rain-interrupted 124-run victory at Edgbaston.

Yuvraj's 53 off 32 balls was full of eye-catching strokeplay and helped India break free from a sluggish phase towards the back end of their innings. He took all the pressure off me when I was not hitting it well.

"The way he (Yuvraj) was hitting the ball, I felt like a club batter in front of him", Kohli told reporters at the post-match press conference late Sunday night here at Edgbaston. Despite India's sub-par performance in the field, they still managed to apply the pressure on their opponents. "The batting I would say was 10 out of 10". "If we tune that up to eight or nine we will be a strong side, it was a very complete game for us".

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After being put in to bat first by Pakistan, Rohit Sharma (91) and Shikhar Dhawan (68) had set the flawless platform for the batsmen to come and make mayhem but by the time the two departed, India were scoring at just around 5.27 runs per over.

The Indian inning was capped with a brilliant quick-fire from Hardik Pandya who hit 18 runs off 5 balls. I think it really deflated the opposition and that gave me the time to settle in.

"The way Yuvi batted, it was a game-changing innings and that gave all of us the confidence to start striking the ball well".

"Players of the calibre of Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan are very hard to stop if they are allowed to settle early, and that is what Pakistan allowed them to do", he said.

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Wahab was forced to go off the field midway through his ninth over in Birmingham as India put on a daunting total of 319/3 in 48 overs in a rain-curtailed match. The Pakistani side looked clueless while trying in vain to get the ferocious Indian batsmen out. "He was playing the IPL but then, global runs are very different, against a quality bowling attack as well", Kohli said. "I think we need to stick together and control our bowling rate, especially last few overs", a disappointed Sarfraz said.

"I got lucky and got dropped and I capitalised", said Yuvraj at the presentation ceremony.

In the 46th over, things went even worst for the Sarfraz Ahmed-led side when the Indian skipper smashed two boundaries and a six and Yuvraj scored his 52nd fifty off 29 balls and 12th against Pakistan. "And everyone agreed, because he just can strike the ball from ball one and has unbelievable ability", Kohli said.

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So hold on to your hats and enjoy the ride on Sunday, as with the Pakistan cricket team anything and everything is possible. He added that India's performance was analysed after the earlier game and the team will concentrate on what it can do well.