The Pre-tournament favourites India earned its first win of the tournament, as the cool-headed Virat Kohli scored an unbeaten half century to see the hosts cruised to a comfortable six-wicket victory after Pakistan had set the hosts a target of 119 on a wildly turning pitch.
India put their campaign back on track after suffering a shock loss against New Zealand in the tournament opener, extending their jinx in major tournaments against Pakistan.
Chasing 119 on a track that seemed dual-paced, India lost their top three batsmen early only to see Kohli and Yuvraj Singh put together a 61-run, fourth-wicket partnership to help the hosts canter home in 15.5 overs in a game reduced to 18 overs a side because of rain. Kohli (55 not out) and Yuvraj combined caution and aggression to blunt the Pakistan bowling attack. Earlier, the Pakistani pacer Sami did make some impression by sending back the Indian opener Shikhar Dhawan and T20 specialist Suresh Raina in his opening over to be on hat-trick but Pakistan's four-pronged pace attack had no answers to Kohli's batting. Interestingly, Virat after scoring his 14th Twenty20 International half-century bowed down to the Indian batting legend of the modern game Sachin Tendulkar, who was sitting in the stadium cheering the Indian team.
Earlier, ahead of mega Indo-Pak tie the Indian Bollywood mega Star Amitabh Bachchan sung the Indian national anthem and the famous Pakistani singer Shafqat Amanat Ali sung the Pakistani national anthem, at the Eden Gardens.
In the end, it was certainly a decisive victory for India and MS Dhoni, who made all the right decisions and got more from his bowlers and fielders than his Pakistani counterpart. The later may perhaps regret some of his decisions before and during the game, such as leaving out a spinner, and putting him as the first down in the batting order, and also for an ineffective spell with the ball.
India now lead Pakistan 11-0 in limited over’s tournament play, and have rescued their World T20 campaign. However, Pakistan too is still in the hunt for a last-four spot, but face tougher tests against the Australians and unbeaten Kiwis.
In the end, it was certainly the ‘CHAK DE’ Performance by India, with the MAUKA AD all set to become more interesting, emotional and funny, next time for Pakistan.