Rohit special takes India to 205/5

India's captain Rohit Sharma celebrates after scoring 50 runs against Australia during ICC Men's T20 World Cup cricket match at Darren Sammy National Cricket Stadium in Gros Islet, Saint Lucia, Monday, June 24, 2024.
India's captain Rohit Sharma celebrates after scoring 50 runs against Australia during ICC Men's T20 World Cup cricket match at Darren Sammy National Cricket Stadium in Gros Islet, Saint Lucia, Monday, June 24, 2024.

Gros Islet (Saint Lucia) | Rohit Sharma combined brute force with elegance in his 92 off 41 balls as India amassed 205 for five against Australia on a belter in their final Super Eights fixture of the T20 World Cup here on Monday.

On the best batting surface of the tournament, Australia put India in to bat and Rohit made the most of the conditions with a sublime knock comprising seven fours and eight sixes including a recording extending 200th in the format.

It was the start of something special when Rohit flicked Mitchell Starc for four in the first over of the game.

Virat Kohli (0) at the other end mistimed a pull off Josh Hazlewood in the following over to be caught in the deep.

Walking the talk once again, Rohit never took the foot off the pedal and went hammer and tongs against Starc, whose second over yielded as many as 29 runs, his most expensive in the format.

The first two sixes in the over came via delightful aerial drive over extra cover before he smashed one in the cow corner region. The fourth maximum of the over came via a mishit that went all the way behind the stumps.

Rohit did bulk of the damage in his 87-run stand with number three Rishabh Pant (15 off 14), who welcomed leg-spinner Adam Zampa into the attack with a six over long-on.

Australia's trump card went wicket-less.

Another memorable shot of Rohit's innings was the down-on-one-knee six over deep mid-wicket off Pat Cummins in the latter's opening over.

Credit must go to India for not allowing any other bowler to settle into a rhythm. Rohit brought his fifty at end of the fifth over with a single and that was also the fastest of the tournament.

Rohit unleashed a six over extra cover when Marcus Stoinis came into the attack in the eighth over.

Such was the authority of Rohit's innings that he could choose his spot against all the bowlers of repute. It could have been a well-deserved 100 but Starc came back to remove the India skipper with a yorker.

Suryakumar Yadav (31 off 15), Hardik Pandya (27 not out off 17) and Shivam Dube (28 off 22) also played their part but India could not make the most of the last five overs, scoring only 43 runs for the loss of one wicket.

Even as his colleagues leaked runs, Josh Hazlewood seemed to be bowling on a different pitch, conceding only 14 runs while taking one wicket in his four overs.

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