Kohli-Rahul’s record-breaking night helps India thrash Pakistan by 228 runs

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Sent in to bat first, India’s opening pair of Rohit Sharma and Shubman Gill displayed unwavering determination against Pakistan’s formidable new-ball duo of Shaheen Afridi and Naseem Shah. While Gill took the initiative and hit Afridi for six boundaries in just two overs, Rohit patiently awaited the arrival of spin before launching an assault on Shadab Khan, dispatching his deliveries to all corners of the field.

Both batsmen reached their half-centuries swiftly, setting the stage perfectly for Virat Kohli and KL Rahul. After the game resumed on the reserve day at 147/2, Kohli and Rahul initially showed restraint but soon unleashed their attacking prowess.

Rahul led the charge, punishing the opposition spinners with a flurry of boundaries, and notched up a run-a-ball century in his comeback game. Kohli, on the other hand, accelerated from 50 to 100 in a mere 29 deliveries, achieving his century in just 84 balls and simultaneously becoming the fastest player to reach 13,000 ODI runs.

He concluded his innings with a maximum and two boundaries, reaching a total of 122 at an impressive strike rate of 129.78. Their partnership remained unbroken at 232 runs, a record-breaking feat as it was the largest ever partnership for India against Pakistan and the biggest ever in the history of the Asia Cup.

In response, Jasprit Bumrah quickly found his rhythm, despite it being his first time bowling in ODIs since July 2022. He made an impact by dismissing Imam ul Haq in the fifth over. Hardik Pandya joined the party and produced a magical delivery to remove opposition skipper Babar Azam immediately after the powerplay.

From that point onward, the Men in Green struggled as wickets fell at regular intervals. Kuldeep Yadav emerged as the standout performer with the ball, delivering exceptional figures of 5/25. His superb bowling performance led to Pakistan’s downfall, as they were bundled out in just 32 overs, handing India a record-breaking victory.

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