Following his side’s five-wicket loss to Pakistan in the Super Four clash at the ongoing Asia Cup, star Indian batter Virat Kohli had some strong words of support for young pacer Arshdeep Singh, who had dropped a crucial catch in the 18th over of the match.

A superb fifty by Mohammed Rizwan and cameo by Mohammad Nawaz powered Pakistan to a five wicket win in a last-over thriller Super Four clash against Pakistan at the ongoing Asia Cup 2022 on Sunday.

“Even when I played my first game against Pakistan in the Champions Trophy, I played a bad shot and got out. Anyone can make mistakes under pressure. It is natural to feel bad. The team environment is great right now, credit for this goes to management and captain. So, one must accept his mistake, address it and look forward to being in that pressure situation once again,” said Kohli in a post-match press conference on Sunday.

The batter admitted that Mohammad Nawaz’s innings of 42 runs in just 20 balls was a turning point in the game.

“A chance was taken by sending him up the order. To play such impactful innings is good. Had his innings been restricted to just 15-20 runs, things could have been different,” he added. Kohli is extremely satisfied and happy with his team’s aggressive approach in T20Is.

It was an exciting day of cricketing action for the fans as they got their money’s worth. Rizwan’s brilliant 71 off 51 balls proved to be the difference between both sides. Chasing 182, Pakistan openers Babar Azam and Mohammed Rizwan tried to give their side a solid start. However, in the fourth over, spinner Ravi Bishnoi struck for India, sending back Babar Azam for 14 off 10 balls. Babar’s horrific run in the tournament continued as he registered his third below-20 score of the tournament.

Rizwan was then joined by Fakar Zaman and they kept the scoreboard ticking and at the end of the powerplay, they were 44/1. Fakhar was out for 15 off 18 balls and Pakistan was 63/2. Mohammad Nawaz started his inning really well by smashing a four and a six in his first five balls. At the end of ten overs, Pakistan was at 76/2.

Bhuvneshwar Kumar gave Team India a much-needed breakthrough, sending off Nawaz back for 42 off 20 balls and breaking the 73-run stand between the duo. Khushdil Shah was next up on the crease. With final four overs to go Pakistan needed 43 runs. Pakistan had lost their 4th wicket at 147 runs and Pandya had revived India’s chances in the game after catching the big fish (Rizwan).

Asif Ali joined Khushdil and Ravi Bishnoi came to deliver the next over. Asif Ali was dropped by Arshdeep Singh. Bishnoi delivered some wides in his over as well. In the final two overs, Pakistan needed 25 runs. Bhuvneshwar came to deliver the 19th over. Asif Ali hit a six on his second delivery, bringing down the equation to 18 runs in 10 balls. Kumar delivered two wides as well. Khushdil hit a four to bring down the equation to 12 off 8 balls. With a four on the final ball, Pakistan needed seven in the final over. Arshdeep came to deliver the final over. He took the wicket of Asif Ali to keep Team India’s hopes alive, with two runs needed in two deliveries. Iftikhar Ahmed was the next batter. His side won the match with one ball to go by five wickets.

Ravi Bishnoi was the pick of the bowlers with 1/26 for India. Bhuvneshwar, Arshdeep, Pandya and Chahal took a wicket each.

Earlier, Virat Kohli’s blistering 60 and 37-run partnership stand with Deepak Hooda guided India to post 181/7. Virat Kohli was in his best form as he smashed 60 runs in 44 deliveries, while Rohit Sharma scored 28 runs setting a solid foundation for the Indian team.

For Pakistan Shadab Khan bagged two wickets while Mohammad Nawaz, Haris Rauf and Naseem Shah scalped one wicket each.

Brief Scores:

India: 181/7 (Virat Kohli 60, Rohit Sharma 28, Shadab Khan 2/31)

Pakistan: 182/5 (19.5) (Mohammed Rizwan 71, Mohammad Nawaz 42,
Ravi Bishnoi 1/26).