Ind vs Afg – 3rd T20I – Ball-by-ball – Rohit Sharma and Rinku Singh set the Chinnaswamy on fire

In one of the most remarkable turnarounds in T20Is, India recovered from 22 for 4 to finish on a mighty 212 for 4 in the third T20I against Afghanistan in Bengaluru. The architects of this comeback were Rohit Sharma and Rinku Singh, who put on an unbroken 190 for the fifth wicket, off just 95 balls. It was India’s highest T20I partnership for any wicket.

Rohit and Rinku reserved their most ferocious assault for the last five overs of the innings, in which India scored 103 runs, in the process almost doubling their 15-overs score. Fifty-eight runs came off the last two overs alone: a T20I record, surpassing Nepal’s 55 against Mongolia in September 2023. Rohit finished unbeaten on 121 off 69 balls, and Rinku on 69 off 39. Here’s how the last two overs unfolded.

Last two overs. Two batters approaching milestones. Omarzai comes back for his last over. Wonder who bowls the last over.

18.1: Azmatullah to Rinku Singh, 1 run
Full, outside off, single to deep cover

18.2: Azmatullah to Rohit Sharma, SIX runs
RGS into the 90s. An on-pace ball right in his slot. Rohit clears the front leg, and slogs him effortlessly over midwicket. This is meat and drink for him

18.3: Azmatullah to Rohit Sharma, FOUR runs
One short of another hundred. Makes room early, Omarzai goes for the slower short ball, but Rohit manages to beat short fine with the pull. Rolls his wrists on it

18.4: Azmatullah to Rohit Sharma, FOUR runs
There it is. A special hundred. A fifth in T20Is. That’s massive. Makes room again, Omarzai tries to slip one wide, but Rohit gets under it and clears the man at point. They came to see Kohli mainly, but Rohit has provided Chinnaswamy a bonus. Incidentally, Kohli also turned around his form with a century against Afghanistan in a dead rubber two years ago. Rohit is not out of form but his T20 numbers haven’t been great last few years. So hopefully this is the start of something special

18.5: Azmatullah to Rohit Sharma, 1 run
Misses out on a thigh-high full toss, gets just the single to long-off

18.6: Azmatullah to Rinku Singh, SIX runs
Now Rinku brings up his fifty. Omarzai misses the yorker again, and you just can’t bowl slot balls to these batters. Over long-off it goes

Janat to bowl the last over. This is matyhem

19.1: Karim Janat to Rohit Sharma, FOUR runs
Rohit predicts a wide ball with the field given to him, shimmies across and laps a wide full toss over square leg for four more

19.2: Karim Janat to Rohit Sharma, (no ball) SIX runs
Call the police. Rohit is stealing the show. Juicy full toss. And also a front-foot no-ball. Rohit has sent this into orbit. These balls he can hit eyes closed. especially when he is 108 not out

19.2: Karim Janat to Rohit Sharma, SIX runs
Rohit’s highest T20I score now. Short of a length, slower ball, just what you should be doing on this pitch, but Rohit has deposited it over wide long-on for another six

19.3: Karim Janat to Rohit Sharma, 1 run
Lands the yorker, Rohit opens the face, but can’t get it past short third

Over the wicket

19.4: Karim Janat to Rinku Singh, SIX runs
Slower ball, 111ks, but right in the slot. Rinku creates the power with his bat speed in the slog. Clears deep midwicket. Carnage

19.5: Karim Janat to Rinku Singh, SIX runs
Absolute mayhem. Janat misses his length again. Another juicy full toss, and Rinku has flicked it ways into the stands. What power in his wrists

19.6: Karim Janat to Rinku Singh, SIX runs
36 off the over including five sixes, a four and a no-ball. Rinku has ended it with 6, 6, 6. Janat goes short this time, but he is hitting everything clean now. Manages to clear deep square leg with the pull

That’s 103 runs from the last five overs. All others than these two scored single figures. These two tried everything but struggled because of the slowness of the pitch. And then Rohit targeted the debutant Saleem. And once it started coming off, the wheels came off for Afghanistan. A fifth T20I hundred for Rohit. Some innings, some fireworks.

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