SHARJAH: Former Indian skipper Virat Kohli and Bhuvneshwar Kumar guided Men in Blue to a 101-run victory over Afghanistan in their last Super Four clash at the Dubai International Stadium on Thursday.
After scoring a mammoth total, the Indian bowling side displayed A-game. Team Afghanistan got off to a terrible start with right-arm Indian pacer Bhuvneshwar dismantling the Afghan batters.
Bhuvneshwar got a five-wicket haul in his four overs while Arshdeep Singh, R Ashwin and Deepak Hooda got one wicket each.
Kohli smashed his 71st international century in today’s encounter. After ton from star batter, the Indian side ended their batting reign at 212/2. Kohli smashed 122* runs off 61 balls while Pant scored 20* off 16. In the absence of skipper Rohit Sharma, Kohli and KL Rahul started for India.
Kohli also overtook skipper Rohit Sharma to score India’s highest in Twenty20 Internationals. The 33-year-old achieved the milestone with a four and six off Afghanistan pace bowler Fareed Ahmad to get a ton after three years.
The Indian player lately revealed that he suffered depression from not being able to score a century in years.
Earlier in the day, the Afghan skipper won the toss and opted to field against Men in Blue in a dead rubber of the Asia Cup on Thursday.
The Indian side made three changes bringing in Deepak Chahar, Dinesh Karthik, and Axar Patel. Captain Rohit Sharma has also been rested with opener K L Rahul stepping into his role.
Both India and Afghanistan failed to qualify for the final as Pakistan beat Afghanistan by one wicket in their final Super 4 match of the Asia Cup on Wednesday, knocking out India and Afghanistan from the final to be played on Sunday.
Chasing a simple target of 130 runs, Babar XI reached 131 for nine in 19.2 overs with young spearhead Naseem Shah (14*) hitting back-to-back sixes to win the match.
After winning the group matches, India crashed into a 5-wicket defeat against the Pakistan side in their first Super 4 match which was then followed by another humiliation by Sri Lanka.
India : KL Rahul(c), Virat Kohli, Suryakumar Yadav, Rishabh Pant(w), Deepak Hooda, Dinesh Karthik, Axar Patel, Ravichandran Ashwin, Deepak Chahar, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Arshdeep Singh
Afghanistan: Hazratullah Zazai, Rahmanullah Gurbaz(w), Ibrahim Zadran, Najibullah Zadran, Mohammad Nabi(c), Karim Janat, Rashid Khan, Azmatullah Omarzai, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Fareed Ahmad Malik, Fazalhaq Farooqi