India played smartly to take the score to 319-3. The batting was sure and assured and barring a few odd shots, played to their strengths. Here are five pointers to take from the batting:
Dhawan and the Champions Trophy are inseparable
The Champions Trophy seems to have a love affair with Shikhar Dhawan. The batsman who came under fire for having a place in the Indian team for the tournament looked really good and was able to strike the ball excellently. Further, his running was good and he timed his innings to perfection. He might feel a little unlucky to have got out to a juicy full toss, but the good score will no doubt do him a world of good.
Rohit is back
After more than 200 days out of action for the national squad, Rohit Sharma came back with a bang. Though he started off a little cautiously, the wayward Pakistani bowling allowed him to play his natural game and soon he was all over the opponents. He might feel a little unlucky to have gotten out at 91 but his innings along with Dhawan set up the base for India to finish off on a high.
Rohit Sharma will look to capitalize on this start to help India get further in the tournament. His ability to pick up
Never write Yuvraj off
Another player under a lot of pressure to deliver in the tournament, Yuvraj Singh (once again) reminded everyone of his class and power. Coming in when the team needed some acceleration, Yuvraj stepped on the pedal and raced to a quick-fire half century off just 29 balls. Yuvraj bought all his experience to the fore and punished some poor bowling from the Pakistanis to the fullest. His innings justifies Kohli’s decision to keep him in the squad.
Kohli power always shows up
When Kohli came out to bat, a lot of the fans would have been expecting to get going immediately. However, he was finding it hard to strike the ball but did the job of rotating the strike extremely well. When it looked like he was losing some touch, he came up with some belligerent hitting to take India to a massive score. Kohli once again reminded everyone that he can never be written off despite a few months and this innings looks ominous to the other opponents.
A new finisher in the making
When Hardik Pandya came in to bat for the last two overs, a lot of the fans might’ve been disappointed that Dhoni did not come. Pandya however, more than compensated by hitting three sixes in a row in the last over and propelling India to a superb score. Dhoni may still be the best finisher of all time, but when it’s time to transition, Pandya seems to be the one who looks capable of taking up the role with ease.