Yuvraj, Ojha dazzle; India thump Bangladesh in T20 opener

London, June 07: Yuvraj Singh dazzled with the bat before Pragyan Ojha spun a web around Bangladesh as India thumped the minnows by 25 runs to begin their title defence with a bang in the Twenty20 World Cup at Trent Bridge on Saturday.

Ojha’s four-wicket haul in his maiden Twenty20 International broke Bangladesh’s back as the minnows finished at 155 for eight, a total they owe to Junaid Siddique (41) and Naeem Islam (28).

Earlier, Gautam Gambhir (50) and Rohit Sharma (36) gave India a rollicking start but it was Yuvraj’s violent 18-ball 41 that propelled them to 180 for five in the Group A opener.

Chasing 181, Bangladesh began on a positive note with Tamim Iqbal (15) hitting Zaheer Khan for two successive fours and Junaid (41 off 22 balls) pulling Irfan Pathan for a six.

M S Dhoni introduced Yusuf Pathan and it paid off as the duo collaborated to get Tamim stumped in the third over.

Junaid looked unperturbed as he scored at a brisk rate, hitting sixes off the Pathan brothers — Yusuf and Irfan — and Harbhajan Singh.

Unfortunately, wickets kept tumbling at the other end. Mohammad Ashraful (11) fell to Ishant Sharma and then Pragyan Ojha struck twice in his first over to unhinge Bangladesh.

Shakib Al Hasan (8) top edged Ojha’s first delivery to Dhoni and then Junaid holed out in the deep as Bangladesh slumped to 77 for four.

WI Vs Aus: Gayle blows Australia away

West Indies’ captain Chris Gayle smashed the Australian bowlers to all parts of the Oval on Saturday to lead his team to a seven wicket victory in their opening Twenty20 World Cup group C match.

Gayle struck 88 with six sixes and six fours from 50 deliveries as West Indies overhauled Australia’s 169 for seven with 4.1 overs to spare.

Andre Fletcher proved an excellent foil, scoring 53 from 32 balls in an opening partnership of 133. Gayle launched an audacious attack on Brett Lee, bowling in excess of 145 kms an hour, in the fifth over of the innings.

He clubbed the Australian fast bowler over long-on into the street and struck another huge six over mid-wicket. Twenty-seven came from the over.

Australia captain Ricky Ponting turned to David Hussey’s gentle slow-medium and Gayle responded by lofting two more sixes into the crowd.

Jerome Taylor had set West Indies on the victory path by dismissing Shane Watson and Australia captain Ricky Ponting for ducks in the opening over of the match.

Australia, reduced to 15 for three after 3.3 overs, did well to reach their eventual total.

Diminutive left-handed opener David Warner anchored the innings with 63 from 53 balls and Brad Haddin (24), David Hussey (27) and Michael Hussey (28) made useful contributions down the order.

New Zealand beat Scotland in Twenty 20

In a contest reduced to 7 overs a side, New Zealand won the toss and elected to field.

Scotland Opener Watson was in cracking form and hit 27 of just 10 balls.

Coetzer too hammered a 15 ball 33, but then fell in the last over.

New Zealand managed to scalp 3 wickets in the last over, but Scotland already had 89 on the board.

However, a flurry of sixes in the penultimate over from Jan Stander, two from successive balls by Ross Taylor (21 not out) and one from Scott Styris (eight not out), gave the New Zealanders victory with an over to spare.

Brendon McCullum, captaining the side in place of Daniel Vettori who withdrew with an injured shoulder, smashed 18 from seven deliveries before he was run out after a mixup with Taylor.

Zimbabwe-born Ryan Watson (27 from 10 balls) got Scotland away to a flying start, hooking Ian O’Brien off the outside edge over the wicketkeeper for four. He took three further boundaries off the last three balls of the over.

James Franklin went for 12 from his only over and even the accurate Jacob Oram conceded 21 from his two overs.

Man-of-the-match Ian Butler finally brought some control to the bowling, with 3-19 from his two overs including two wickets from three balls.