India showed "too much respect" to Afghanistan spinners and should have batted more freely, said former captain Krishnamachari Srikkanth, who hailed the "outstanding leadership" of skipper Virat Kohli during the team's 11-run win here.
Afghanistan, who restricted India to 224-8, required 16 from the 50th over with three wickets in hand after Mohammad Nabi (52 off 55) had kept their chase alive with a superb innings in Southampton. POINTS TABLEShami, who was playing his first match of the ongoing tournament, bowled on great lengths during the final over and picked up a hat-trick to bowl out Afghanistan for 213 in 49.5 overs.
Shami then clean-bowled Aftab Alam and Mujeeb Ur Rahman to seal a nerve-jangling win with a hat-trick.
The match didn't turn out to be as straightforward as many expected it to be for Team India.
Kohli batted with trademark fluency, though, making up for a lack of boundaries with smart running between the wickets during his breezy 67.
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South Africa's bowlers have delivered thus far in the World Cup but it is the batsmen who have failed at their job. Sarfaraz insisted that it was not the first time they had lost to India in the World Cup and hence "it's fine".
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Replacing the injured Shikhar Dhawan at the top of the order, Rahul made 30 before attempting an unnecessary reverse sweep and gifting his wicket.
Rating the win over Afghanistan as a special one, the India captain said the wicket was a hard one for stroke-making because of its two-paced nature. Mahendra Singh Dhoni made a laboured 28 and Hardik Pandya could not reproduce his trademark power-hitting.
The India captain would have been fretting as first Gulbadin (27) and then Rahmat and Hashmatullah dug in, so he turned back to Bumrah and his seamer did not disappoint, forcing Rahmat to top-edge a pull to fine leg, before Hashmatullah ballooned a ball back to him two deliveries later.
Kohli also praised man-of-the-match Jasprit Bumrah for his impressive bowling display that brought India back into the contest. "We have lost four games very badly, but the last two games we have played really well". "But I was confident that the last 10 overs, which were bowled by both of us, would be the best for the team", he added.