Mon, Jun 08, 2009 - Page 18 News List

Pragyan Ojha leads India to victory over Bangladesh

REUTERS , NOTTINGHAM, ENGLAND

Indian cricket fans are pictured ahead of their team’s Twenty20 World Cup cricket match against Bangladesh at Trent Bridge cricket ground in Nottingham, England, on Saturday.

PHOTO: AP

India’s Pragyan Ojha claimed four wickets on his Twenty20 international debut to bowl the holders to a 25-run win over Bangladesh in their opening World Cup group A game on Saturday.

The left-arm spinner, yet to play a Test, took 4 for 21 from his four overs and ended an early victory charge from Bangladesh, who managed 155 for eight in reply to India’s 180 for five at Trent Bridge.

Bangladesh were 74 for two after eight overs and managing a run rate of more than nine runs per over.

But Ojha then spoiled their chances of an upset, gradually steering India toward a comfortable victory.

“We are defending champions so when you get into the team there is a lot of responsibility on you to perform,” Ojha told reporters. “I’m glad I was able to do a job for my captain.”

“Everyone contributed but especially Yuvraj [Singh] with the bat,” he added, referring to the left-hander’s innings of 41 from 18 balls, including three sixes in one over.

Ojha had Shakib al Hasan caught from his first delivery after the batsman top-edged a drive to wicketkeeper Mahendra Singh Dhoni.

Opener and top scorer Junaid Siddique (41 from 22 balls) followed four deliveries later, caught at deep midwicket.

Mahmudullah, caught by a diving Yuvraj, and Mashrafe Mortaza (bowled) capped off a fine opening match for Ojha, who had been part of the winning Deccan Chargers side in last month’s Indian Premier League final.

Opener Gautam Gambhir top scored for India with 50 from 46, but it was Yuvraj — who struck four sixes in total — that really took the game away from Bangladesh.

“Those three sixes [in one Naeem Islam over] from Yuvraj was probably the telling point,” Bangladesh coach Jamie Siddons said. “We need to stop chasing 180 to win these games. But we still missed an opportunity as 180 was gettable.”

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