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PK, Bhajji fire India to Asia Cup final

India vs Pakistan: Asia Cup

Harbhajan Singh’s heroics in the dying stages of as cliffhanger against archrivals Pakistan lifted India to the finals of the Asia Cup. As Pakistan saw themselves shunted out of the tournament, they must be ruing the fact that they fell short by atleast 30 runs while posting a challenge for India – the credit for which must go to the Indian bowlers, spearheaded by Praveen Kumar – the gutsy Royal Challenger – and of course Harbhajan.

PK, as Praveen Kumar is better known, returned in the middle overs to get rid of the dangerous Shahid Afridi and Abdul Razzaq to dent Pakistan’s momentum, which at one point was looking good to reach 300. PK also picked up Kamran Akmal in the penultimate over to return with figures of 3/53 – the most successful amongst the Indians. His bowling in the middle overs choked the Pakistani to the extent that the match was half won by India. It was now left for the batsmen cross the hurdle.

Brief Scores:

Pakistan: 267 in 49.3 overs (PK 3/53)
India: 271/7 in 49.5 (Gambhir 83, Dhoni 56)

India vs Pakistan: Asia Cup

Harbhajan Singh’s heroics in the dying stages of as cliffhanger against archrivals Pakistan lifted India to the finals of the Asia Cup. As Pakistan saw themselves shunted out of the tournament, they must be ruing the fact that they fell short by atleast 30 runs while posting a challenge for India – the credit for which must go to the Indian bowlers, spearheaded by Praveen Kumar – the gutsy Royal Challenger – and of course Harbhajan.

PK, as Praveen Kumar is better known, returned in the middle overs to get rid of the dangerous Shahid Afridi and Abdul Razzaq to dent Pakistan’s momentum, which at one point was looking good to reach 300. PK also picked up Kamran Akmal in the penultimate over to return with figures of 3/53 – the most successful amongst the Indians. His bowling in the middle overs choked the Pakistani to the extent that the match was half won by India. It was now left for the batsmen cross the hurdle.

The Indian chase was nothing short of drama as Sehwag fell cheap after a painstaking 10 off 32 balls. But Gautam Gambhir (83) and uber cool skipper Dhoni (56) kept their heads down to script a 98 runs partnership which turned the match in India’s favour. However, when both perished, the balance dwindled against India as pressures mounted on the new batsmen in the middle. Raina and Harbhajan then penned a counter attack as India needed 49 runs in a little over four overs. Shoaib Akhtar was in his elements in his last spell as he cramped the Indians with pace and space. But the erring deliveries were not spared. Earlier Dhoni picked a “Free hit” off Shoaib for a six, and later it was Raina who flicked one over the ropes to reduce the margin. His quickfire 34 off 27 deliveries took India to the doorsteps of victory but India still needed 6 off 5 deliveries to seal the match.

PK then shared the middle with Harbhajan and scampered three runs in the next two deliveries to hand over the baton to Harbhajan to finish the race. A wild swing by Harbhajan connecting the Mohammad Aamer delivery perfectly landing the ball safely sailing over the ropes sent the Indian camp for a home run in the penultimate ball of the match.

Brief Scores:

Pakistan: 267 in 49.3 overs (PK 3/53)
India: 271/7 in 49.5 (Gambhir 83, Dhoni 56)

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