Openers Babar Azam (68* off 52) and Mohammad Rizwan (79* off 55) chased down the target of 152 with 13 balls to spare after the bowlers had restricted India to a below-par total, which Virat Kohli admitted was “15-20” short.
Shaheen Afridi took the Man of the Match award for his scintillating spell wherein he dismissed Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul with the new ball and later got the better of half-centurion Virat Kohli.
The Indian skipper highlighted that batting in the first innings was challenging and Pakistani bowlers made it even more difficult with 3 early wickets and then taking regular strikes.
“We didn’t execute properly. Credit where it’s due and Pakistan outplayed us today. They started brilliantly with the ball, and 3 wickets for 20 runs was not a good start. We needed wickets early but with the bat they gave us absolutely no chances,” Virat Kohli said at the post-match presentation.
“It played slow in the first half and hitting through the line was not that easy as it was in the second half, after 10 overs. We needed those 15-20 extra runs and for that we needed a good start but Pakistan’s bowling didn’t allow us to get those extra runs,” he added.
This is just the first game of the tournament, not the last: Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli demanded that the team remain composed after this loss – which is India’s first-ever loss to Pakistan in World Cup history – as this is just their first game of the tournament.
When asked at the thought of playing an extra spinner for a seamer, the 32-year-old pointed out that the dew would make it difficult for the spinner as well.
“We could make the argument of getting in another slower bowler, but it’s important to stay composed and understand our strengths because with the dew the slower bowlers couldn’t be effective either. This is just the first game of the tournament, not the last,” the Indian captain concluded.
India will next meet New Zealand on October 31, next Sunday, in Dubai. They will then play Afghanistan, Scotland, and Namibia in the Super 12 stage.
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