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India vs Pakistan: Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul break Tendulkar-Sidhu World Cup record

India Today logo India Today 16-06-2019
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Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul gave India the perfect start in their big-ticket World Cup 2019 match against arch-rivals Pakistan at Old Trafford in Manchester on Sunday. The India openers broke a 23-year-old record set by Sachin Tendulkar and Navjot Singh Sidhu for the highest opening partnership in a World Cup match against Pakistan.

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Sachin Tendulkar and Navjot Sidhu had stitched a 90-run stand for the opening wicket in the 1996 World Cup match vs Pakistan in Bengaluru. India went on to post 287 before winning the match by 37 runs.

Rohit and Rahul broke the record in the 16th over on Sunday in Manchester. Rohit helped the duo get the landmark in style with a cut against leg-spinner Shadab Khan. The duo added a 100-plus stand for the opening wicket, thereby becoming the first Indian pair to do so vs Pakistan in a World Cup match.

Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul, joining hands for the first time at the top of the order for India in ODIs, showed no signs of nerves even as the hype surrounding India vs Pakistan World Cup 2019 match hit the roof. Rahul, who was picked in the squad as a back-up opener, had played at No. 4 for India in their wins over South Africa and Australia but the injury to Shikhar Dhawan had forced the Karnataka batsman to open the innings in Manchester.

Rohit and Rahul started cautiously, playing out Mohammad Amir's opening spell on an overcast morning at the Old Trafford that was filled by a sea of blue and green. However, Rohit Sharma cut loose after settling down as he took the Pakistan attack to the cleaners.

Rohit Sharma got to his fifty in just 34 balls as he took the attack to Pakistan leg-spinner Shadab Khan to the cleaners in his first over, hitting him for a massive 91-m six in the over. Notably, Rohit had also gone past MS Dhoni for the most number of sixes by an Indian batsman in international cricket when he hit Hasan Ali over the deep fine-leg boundary in the sixth over.

Despite the carnage at the other end, Rahul showed a lot of composure as he was happy to play second fiddle to Rohit Sharma.

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(Video by ESPNcricinfo)

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