Virat Kohli

Virat Kohli (left) was India’s top scorer with 43 runs off 34 balls © Getty Images

By Jaideep Vaidya
Birmingham: Jun 23, 2013
A rain-curtailed tie combined with some panic from the Indian batsmen in the summit clash resulted in England being set a none-too-imposing target of 130 to win in 20 overs in the final of the ICC Champions Trophy 2013.

As has been the norm for most parts of this 17-day tournament, rain played a dampener and ate into nearly six hours of play, even threatening to call off the match and force the two captains to share the trophy. For the Indians, it was a déjà vu of 11 years ago when a grim Sourav Ganguly had shared the cup with Sanath Jayasuriya. Today, Ganguly, who had traded his sky blue jersey for a crisp suit of a lighter shade, was part of the commentary panel and looked a concerned person as he strolled out to have a chat with the officials during the delay.
As for the crowd, which was a sea of India blue clad in the tricolour, mixed together with a sprinkling of English support, it stuck to its place throughout the lengthy pour and danced to the tunes of the stadium boombox, and saw the funny side when it played Rihanna’s Umbrella. When the skies finally cleared and the two teams walked out for a Twenty20 match, it was the Englishmen who were greeted with boos while the ‘visitors’ were cheered on. Nearly 24,500 of the 25,000-capacity stadium erupted as Rohit Sharma edged James Anderson past first slip for the first boundary of the innings. Their happiness was to be short-lived, however, as Stuart Broad got one to nip back into the right-hander and bowl through his gates soon after.
Shikhar Dhawan, India’s best batsman and the tournament’s highest run scorer, meanwhile, got off to a typically positive start at the other end. Some of the shots he player just oozed of so much confidence in his own abilities. An upper-cut for six off Stuart Broad was achieved via a long leap in the air, while James Tredwell was swept magnificently for four wide of the deep square-leg fielder. However, it wasn’t to be a day for the likely hero as Ravi Bopara came in and got Dhawan to drive him straight into the hands of cover to end the Indian batsman’s love affair with the tournament.
With Dhawan gone for 31, his lowest score in a tournament ridden with two centuries and a half century, it was as if India did not know what to do. The change in format did not help either, which was surprising given the Indians play so much Twenty20 cricket. But the 2011 World Cup champions slipped from 50 for one to 66 for five within five overs. Bopara, England’s fifth-choice bowler, had figures of three for 20 in his maximum of four overs.

Virat Kohli, fresh from a half century in the semi-final against Sri Lanka, then combined with Ravindra Jadeja to help India wade through the marshes. The duo added a quick 47 runs in just over five overs before Kohli holed out to long-on which was manned by none other than Bopara. Jadeja then added 16 off the last nine balls to get India to a total their bowlers will have to perform really well to defend.
Brief scores:
India 129 for 7 in 20 overs (Virat Kohli 43, Ravindra Jadeja 33*; Ravi Bopara 3 for 20) vs England.
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