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Asian Games

Asian Games Cricket: Youngsters shine in China for Indian team

Indian youngsters Yashasvi Jaiswal and Rinku Singh excelled as the Indian men's cricket team reached the semis of the 19th Asian Games.

Asian Games Cricket: Youngsters shine in China for Indian team

Syed Tawsif Ahmed

Updated: 4 Oct 2023 6:27 AM GMT

A thrilling display from India with the bat ensured their qualification for the semis of the 19th Asian Games.

In the highly anticipated quarterfinal clash on Tuesday, cricket enthusiasts were treated to an exciting battle between India and Nepal. The game took place at the ZJUT Cricket Field in Hangzhou, China.

Indian captain, Ruturaj Gaikwad won the toss and elected to bat first. He came with his partner Yashasvi Jaiswal to open the innings for India. They were off to an exhilarating start in the powerplay bringing up 50 for the team in just four overs.

Yashasvi looked in fine touch right from the beginning. He scored his half-century in just 22 balls while Gaikwad departed at the other end trying to clear the boundary. Tilak Verma and Jitesh Sharma too departed quickly, but Jaiswal kept ticking the score. He held one end completely and brought up his century in just 48 balls, hitting seven sixes in his innings.

There are many reasons to believe that Jaiswal would stand out in this tournament for India and in the future.

Jaiswal won the IPL 2023 Emerging Player of the Season Award for his outstanding performances - he scored the most runs (625) among the youngsters at an average of 48.08 with six fifty-plus scores for the Rajasthan Royals, scoring their only hundred of the season. In June, he received his maiden call-up to the Test side against the West Indies and scored 171 runs, earning the Player of the Match in his debut.

Cut to the match, Rinku Singh finished the Indian innings in style as he always does. Two boundaries and two sixes in the final over from Rinku helped India cross the 200 mark scoring an unbeaten 37 off just 15 balls. He has played only one match for India before this - making his international debut against Ireland scoring an invaluable 38 off 21 balls and winning the player of the match for the same.

It wouldn’t be an odd thing to say that India has finally found a finisher for the future who is strikingly consistent. India finished with 202 runs on the board in their twenty overs.

When Nepal began their innings, fast bowler Avesh Khan struck early for India. An emotional debut for Sai Kishore bore fruit when he dismissed Bhurtel and put pressure on the opposition early on. Nepal were down to 77 for the loss of four wickets in 11 overs. The required run rate was going high, and they kept losing wickets at regular intervals - there was no way that Nepal could come back.

Except when Nepal did - a remarkable comeback from them to end their innings at 179 runs. Kushal Malla looked good, hitting a few maximums before getting dismissed by Bishnoi. Contributions from Dipendra, Sundeep, and Karan were all instrumental in their chase.

Avesh Khan and Ravi Bishnoi picked up three wickets apiece while Arshdeep finished his spell with two scalps. Eventually, India managed to survive a scare by winning the match and advancing to the semifinal with just a 23-run win. However, this might be the perfect reality check for the team as they progress into the semis.

A wonderful match overall- exhibiting remarkable skill and sportsmanship, making it an enthralling experience for the fans. Nepal is truly a team to look out for in the future.

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