ANKARA (AA) – A dominant England crushed fancied India by 10 wickets in a one-sided clash at a packed Adelaide cricket stadium on Thursday to secure their berth in the final of the Twety20 Cricket World Cup in Australia.
Blazing knocks studded with a flurry of boundaries and sixes from skipper Jos Buttler and Alex Hales powered England to chase a healthy 169-run target with ease in the 16th over.
The duo completely destroyed the Indian bowling attack, which buckled under the weight of expectations and looked totally unimpressive throughout the game.
It, more or less, looked like a practice match for the fiery English pair, who played strokes on all sides of the ground with total dominance.
Hales, named man of the match, hit a blistering 86-run knock off 49 balls, while Buttler took only 47 balls to score 80 runs.
On Sunday, England will face Pakistan at the Melbourne Cricket Ground in what many expect to be a “repeat telecast” of the 1992 world cup when the green shirts defeated the red shirts at the same venue to clinch their first world cup.
As Buttler hit the winning shot – a towering six into the stands on mid-on – English fans and players hugged and greeted one another.
Whereas, the Indian fans who packed the stadium in anticipation of a victory, were disappointed by their team’s embarrassing performance.
Many of them even left the stadium in the middle and last moments of the game, which appeared to be a total shock for not only tens of millions of Indian fans back home, but for Pakistanis who expected a “dream final” against archrival in Melbourne.
Earlier, the English captain won the toss and chose to field.
The Blue shirts got off to a bad start when opener KL Rahul was caught behind off Chris Woakes in the second over for five runs after beginning with a cracking boundary off English pacer Ben Stokes.
Out-of-form Indian skipper Rohit Sharma, who hit four boundaries after a scratchy start, tried to build the inning with in-form Virat Kohli, but Chris Jordan ended the partnership in his first over.
Then came fiery Hardik Pandya, who, along with Kohli, propelled India to post a decent total of 168 for 6.
Pandya took only 33 deliveries to hit blazing 63 runs studded with four boundaries and five sixes. He was out hit-wicket on the last delivery of the inning by Jordan.
Kohli, who leads the tournament batting chart with 296 runs, hit another 50 off 39 balls before being caught at short third man by Adil Rashid off Jordan.
Kohli also reached 4,000 T20 international runs in the 15th over with a boundary off Liam Livingstone.
India, which won the inaugural T20 World Cup in 2007, have been looking for an international title since winning the Champion Trophy in 2013.
Source: Anadolu Agency