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Wednesday, February 28, 2024

India look to gain 2 more points as they face minnows Netherlands


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Sydney: The Men in Blue will look to gain two more points by winning their second T20 World Cup match against minnows Netherlands to affirm their knockout chances at the Sydney Cricket Ground here on Thursday and hope their top batters get some runs after they failed to fire all cylinders against Pakistan in their first match.

Skipper Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul and Surya Kumar Yadav, who did not fire in the last match, would like to grab the opportunity to get some runs off Netherlands’ not-so-incisive bowling ahead of the South Africa encounter.

Coming to their aid could be the SCG track which favours the batsmen and long boundaries. A testimony to this was New Zealand scoring 200 against Australia.

On the other hand, Virat Kohli will be looking to continue his momentum with the bat as he notched up a legendary knock of 82 not out, helping India register a miraculous win over Pakistan.

Hardik Pandya, who brought about a century partnership with Kohli when India were in a hole, too would like to repeat his lion-hearted performance against Pakistan.

Though the Scott Edwards-led Netherlands may not be as competent as star-studded India, they have the potential to script an upset, but going by their loss to Bangladesh in their first Super 12 match against Bangladesh, they are low in confidence.

In the last match against Bangladesh, Netherlands bowlers did well to restrict their rivals to 144 in stipulated 20 overs, but their batsmen let the side down by throwing their wickets away with unnecessary run-outs.

Though Colin Ackermann and Paul van Meekeren helped them reach closer to the target, they fell just nine runs short.

Aware that a successive loss to India could throw them out of the world cup campaign, Netherlands can get inspired by Ireland’s upset victory over a strong England side.

The Netherlands would like to bank on speedster Bas de Leede, who has been exceptional by picking up 7 wickets in just 3 games in the group stage, and in Super 12, he bagged 2 Bangladesh wickets.

In 12 overs, Leede has claimed 9 wickets at an average of 10.78 and is the second in the most wickets bagged list after the Sri Lankan spinner Wanindu Hasaranga.

Come tomorrow, it will be an interesting duel between the two sides as India will be eyeing to gain two more points to affirm their chances of qualifying for the knockouts, and Netherlands look to put their best foot forward.

Squad (from)

India: Rohit Sharma (captain), KL Rahul (vice-captain), Virat Kohli, Suryakumar Yadav, Hardik Pandya, Dinesh Karthik, Axar Patel, R Ashwin, Yuzvendra Chahal, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammed Shami, Arshdeep Singh, Deepak Hooda, Harshal Patel, Rishabh Pant

Netherlands: Scott Edwards (captain and wk), Colin Ackermann, Tom Cooper, Bas de Leede, Brandon Glover, Fred Klaassen, Stephan Myburgh, Vikramjit Singh, Teja Nidimanuru, Max o Dowd, Tim Pringle, Roelof van der Merwe, Timm van der Gugten, Logan van Beek, Paul van Meekeren, Shariz Ahmed.

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