The duo of Mohammed Shami and KL Rahul was superb with the ball and behind the stumps in the semi-final of the ICC World Cup 2023. The keeper-batter and the pacer were spot-on with his skills with the gloves at the iconic Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai.
KL Rahul put a staggering effort behind the stumps that helped India draw the first blood. He put in a Superman dive to take the catch of Devon Conway and help his team get off the flying start in the defence of 398 runs in semi-fina at Mumbai.
During the first ball of the 6th over, Mohammed Shami bowled a round-the-wicket delivery to which Devon Conway tried to play the drive. He got the edge and it seemed that it was a first slip catch. But KL Rahul had other ideas.
KL Rahul leaped to his left and plucked a superb low catch. He had to go for it because the slip fielder had no chance. The keeper-batter made sure that he grabbed it and became the contender for the gold medal. Here’s the video:
Devon Conway scored just 13 runs and after his wicket, Mohammed Shami removed Rachin Ravindra as well. The fast bowler looked a class apart in the game and helped India win the game by 90 runs and go into the final of the tournament.
After removing both the openers, Mohammed Shami brought India back into the game when the partnership between Daryl Mitchell and Kane Williamson was taking place. The fast bowler produced a magnificent spell of fast bowling and helped India win.
Mohammed Shami picked 7 wickets and returned with the figures of 7/57. He also became the leading wicket-taker in the tournament. His spell helped India end the New Zealand jinx and book their berth for the final.
IND vs NZ: This is a huge platform – Mohammed Shami after his five wickets
Mohammed Shami talked about his performance and expressed his delight, saying that he tried to take wickets with the new ball. He said that it’s a huge platform for the team as they lost the last two World Cups. He explained:
“I was waiting for my turn. I wasn’t playing much white ball cricket. I had in mind, that we talk about a lot of things like yorkers and slower balls. I tried to take wickets with the new ball. I try to take as many as I can with the new ball. I dropped the catch of Kane. I felt bad. I tried to take pace off. They were playing their shots. So, I took a chance. The wicket was good. There was the fear of dew.
“The grass was cut off nicely. The runs were enough. Had dew come in, things could have been bad. The slower balls might not have worked. I feel amazing. This is a huge platform. We lost in the semis in the 2015 and the 2019 WC. Looking to cash in with the chance I have been given. We don’t know when all of us will get a chance like this again.”
India will next be seen in action when they will take on one of Australia or South Africa on 19th November in Ahmedabad in the final.
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