India flexed their batting might at the ICC Academy in Dubai, chasing down England’s total of 188 with an over to spare. KL Rahul set up the chase with a 23-ball half-century filled with delectable shots on the off. Ishan Kishan, given another audition at the top of the order, played second fiddle in the 82-run opening stand and came into his own in an over bowled by Mark Wood when he plundered 16. Kishan added another 24 off an Adil Rashid over and finished with 70 off 46 before he made way for the middle-order. Hardik Pandya, who didn’t bowl, applied the finishing touches with a brisk cameo while Virat Kohli, who confirmed he’d bat at No.3, played out a sedate 11 off 13.
India have more questions with the ball, having played five bowlers in a 3-2 pace-spin combination. Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Rahul Chahar conceded 54 and 43 from their four overs while Jasprit Bumrah and R. Ashwin were excellent. For England, Jonny Bairstow and Moeen Ali enjoyed productive outings with the bat in a game that regular captain Eoin Morgan sat out post his IPL commitments.
Brief scores: England 188/5 in 20 overs (Jonny Bairstow 49, Moeen Ali 43*; Mohammed Shami 3-40, Jasprit Bumrah 1-26) lost to India 192/3 in 19 overs (Ishan Kishan 70, KL Rahul 51; David Willey 1-16) by 7 wickets
Australia vs New Zealand
Following sapping series losses against West Indies and Bangladesh recently, a near full-strength Australia began their T20 World Cup campaign with a morale-boosting win over Trans-Tasman rivals New Zealand in the warm-up encounter. They didn’t have it easy, however, huffing and puffing their way to the target of 159 with a ball to spare.
David Warner bagged a golden duck but Mitchell Marsh, batting at No.3, combined with captain Aaron Finch to put the chase on track. Steve Smith and Marcus Stoinis batted steadily through the middle but Australia lost their way through the Mitchell Santner spell when he took out Finch, Smith and Wade. Ashton Agar and Mitchell Starc hit a few timely boundaries to take the chase over the lines.
Earlier in the day, New Zealand made a fast start through Daryl Mitchell and Martin Guptill but lost their way through the middle overs against the guile of Adam Zampa. Kane Richardson returned impressive figures of 3 for 24 while James Neesham scored a quickfire 31 lower-down the order to prop up the score, which ultimately proved inadequate.
Brief scores:New Zealand 158/7 in 20 overs (Kane Williamson 37, Daryl Mitchell 33; Kane Richardson 3-24, Adam Zampa 2-17) lost to Australia 159/7 in 19.5 overs (Steven Smith 35, Mitchell Marsh 24; Mitchell Santner 3-22) by 3 wickets
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