World Cup Day 2 Show Stealers: Masakadza, Philander, Raina & Ashwin

On Day 2 while David Miller, Duminy and Virat Kohli broke many records, openers Chibhabha and Shikhar Dhawan gave a strong foundation to their teams, two bowlers and two batsmen stole the show and played crucial part in deciding the games. Philander for South Africa and Ashwin for India swung the game in favour of their respective teams, while Raina played a match-defining knocks, Masakadza played a challenging knock like James Taylor on Day 1.

2015 World Cup: Complete Fixture in Indian Time
World Cup Match 3: World Record for Miller & Duminy, SA survive Zim Scare
World Cup Match 4: How India Made 6-0 vs Pakistan
World Cup Match 4: How India Made 6-0 vs Pakistan
World Cup Day 2 Summary: World Record, 3 Centuries, 300+ Totals, 2 Expected Wins & Strong Zimbabwe

Masakadza and Philander
A chase of 340 runs against the strong bowling attack of South Africa is a tall ask for any team. Zimbabwe would be the least expected team among all. But 74-ball 80 runs by Hamilton Masakadza told a different story. He came to bat after 6.3 overs were bowled by South African Philander and Morne Morkel and Zimbabwe were 32/1. After playing 20 balls with caution, his first attack came against Morne Morkel in 15th over with two consecutive boundaries. In next over Duminy faced the same fate.

In 21st over, Behardien was the target as he completed his 4000 ODI runs. The best was saved for Steyn whom he attacked and scored a six and two boundaries in 23rd and 25th over of the innings. His quick scoring has put Zimbabwe way ahead of South Africa. By the time he got out in 33rd over caught by Amla on the bowling of Imran Tahir, Zimbabwe were 182/2 needing only 151 runs from 18 overs with 7 wickets in hand. But Philander and Co helped South Africa survive the repeat of 1999 World Cup.

Philander had a figure of 2/30 in 8 overs bowling in 3 idfferent spells. Except Masakadza nobody could face him. He was most economical bowler of the day from both the matches and saved South Africa the blushes when Morne Morkel and Steyn were going for runs. He grabbed the wickets opener Sikandar Raza in 7th over and Solomon Mire in 48th over.

Suresh Raina and Ashwin
Although Kohli hit the century, it was Raina’s knock that took India to a safe total.

Raina came to bat after 29.5 over of Indian innings when India was strongly placed after the 2nd wicket century partnership between Dhawan and Kohli. Dhawan was run out due to the fault of Kohli, who was batting at 71 runs, when Raina joined. He scored 9 runs on 12 balls and then realised that the run rate was getting slower as Kohli in 80s was getting cautious. His first big hit was a lucky six of Haris Sohail in 24th ovoer.

Till the end of 41st over run rate got slower as he got lesser strikes, and Kohli was still 3 runs short of match-deciding century. Raina was at 34 runs on 34 balls. In next 17 balls he jumped to 72 runs. When he got out in the 48th over on 54-ball 74 runs made with 5 4s and 3 6s, Indian run rate had crossed 6 runs an over.

Chasing 301 runs Pakistan was goind steady despite losing first wicket of experienced Younis in the 4th over to Shami. Haris Sohail and Shehzad had taken Pakistan to 58/1 in 13 overs. With Ashwin’s arrival, Pakistan got into trouble. His first over was a maiden to Shehzad. In 2nd over he gave 5 singles. His third over was again a maiden and even a wicket of Haris Sohail was added to it. Pak reeled at 79/2 in 18 overs.

His 4th over saw Shehzad hitting two boundaries and he completed first spell at 4 overs 2 maidens 1/14.
His 2nd spell started in 28th over and it was his third maiden over, this time to Misbah. In his next over Afridi and Misbah extracted 8 runs and his 6 overs had then costed 22/1.

During the powerplay he bowled his most expensive over where Misbah milked 15 runs and then in the 42nd over he bowled his last over finishing the day at 1/41 in 8 overs with 3 maidens.

His 3 maidens are the first for an Indian bowlers since 1979. In 1979 Venkataraghavan has bowled 3 maidens in one innings.

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