Champions Trophy 2017: Skipper Virat Kohli calls for improvement in fielding

Pakistan's abject surrender in their Champions Trophy opener against India in Birmingham.

A minute's silence was held before the first ball was bowled.

Riding on half-centuries from Rohit Sharma (91), Shikhar Dhawan (68), Virat Kohli (81*) and Yuvraj Singh (53), India posted a huge total of 319/3 from their quota of 48 overs in a rain curtailed match.

India were sitting comfortably at 192/2 in the 37th over and rain till then, had reduced the match to a 48 overs a side contest. He also took a dig at Wahab Riaz' injury, which did not go well among his fans across the border. And that's disappointing. "The worrying thing for me - and it has been for a period of time - is we just do the basics wrong".

The pressure started building on the bowlers and fielders and, as a result, they dropped Yuvraj and Kohli in the process, which cost them hugely in the death overs.

He is right. With Mohammed Amir breathing fire in the first over against Rohit Sharma, it was only logical that Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed would bring Hasan Ali or Wahab Riaz from the other end.

Opening the batting together after nearly a year and a half, Rohit and Dhawan got off to a slow but steady start.

Hasan eventually had Yuvraj lbw on review but it was all too late.

Umesh picked three wickets while Pandya (2-43) and Jadeja chipped in with two wickets.

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Amir bowled 8.1 overs before developing severe cramp and leaving the field, while Riaz, who conceded 87 runs in 8.4 wicketless overs in the most expensive spell of five-plus overs in tournament history, hobbled off after twisting an ankle. "We don't run well enough between wickets", he said.

A 30-run stand between Ali and Mohammad Hafeez followed by a 23-run partnership by Hafeez and Shoaib Malik was the only bit of resistance that the Pakistanis could manage thereafter.

These are scenes when the crowd went ballistic after Virat Kohli got to his 50. "But his innings was the difference in the game".

"We were in control for 40 overs but we lost the plot in the last eight overs", the wicket- keeper added after what was the opening Group B match for both the Asian giants in a tournament featuring the world's top eight one-day worldwide teams.

Play was stopped first when India were 46 for no loss in the 10th over and rain played spoilsport again when they were 173 for one in the 34th over with Rohit and Kohli holding fort.

Both Yuvraj and Kohli were given lives en route to their match-changing knocks.

"In modern ODI cricket you need to innovate and come hard at the bowlers, batsmen can not let the bowlers get into their groove". They scored 124 in those last eight, and the momentum went to India.

"Everything was under control after 40 overs, but we lost the plot in the last eight".

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