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ODI 2: Ind beat Pak, level series

| April 19, 2006, 5:07 PM IST

New Delhi: India finished off the Pakistani batting line up for 218 and came back into the series to make it 1-1 at Abu Dhabi on Wednesday.

A combined effort by the seamers initially and the spinners at the latter stages of the game made sure Pakistan never got their bearings right.

Inzamam-ul-Haq was the only one carrying on with the fight, but he embarrasingly got run out, after a gritty 79. Ramesh Powar bowled delightfully to finish with figures of three for 61.

Irfan Pathan struck early in the Pakistan innings for India and gave his team the vital breakthroughs they needed to tighten their grip on the second ODI in Abu Dhabi.

He too scalped three, conceeding only 35 runs in his 10 overs. Imran Farhat was the first man to go as he was trapped right in front of the stumps off Pathan for just eight.

Shahid Afridi came in at three, but looked jittery right from the beginning. Pathan bowled him with a beauty, uprooting the middle stick. He did not trouble the scorers.

Ajit Agarkar soon joined in and sent back Younis Khan, Pakistan's Hero for the last game, for just five. This put the breaks on Pakistan's scoring rate.

Earlier, a steady innings by skipper and Man of the Match Rahul Dravid (92 off 116 balls) helped India set Pakistan a respectable target of 270 runs to win the match earlier on Wednesday.

Dravid fell short of his 12th one-day century in international cricket, when he fell to Mohammed Asif for 92. His innings contained 10 hits to the ropes.

M S Dhoni, who was promoted up the order, too, blazed through to a run-a-ball 50, before being bowled by Naved-ul-Hasan.

Before that, dashing opener Virender Sehwag gave India a solid start alongside his skipper as India made a determined bid to level the series 1-1 against their arch-rivals.

Sehwag, who sat out Tuesday's game, was in full flow as he made the most of the opportunity given to him. Out of sorts completely during the series against England, he had been rested for the last two games against England and Pakistan.

Sehwag's 73 off 83 balls contained 10 boundaries and one towering six.

Dravid, determined to turn the table on Pakistan, had again elected to bat after winning the toss as he had done on Tuesday.

Unlike the top order collapse on Tuesday, the Indians didn't falter this time round and started off steadily, though they saw off the first three overs without any run on the board.

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Team Rankings

Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 4027 115
2 New Zealand 2829 109
3 South Africa 2917 108
4 England 4366 104
5 Australia 3270 99
see more
Rank Team Points Rating
1 England 6745 125
2 India 7071 122
3 New Zealand 4837 112
4 Australia 5543 111
5 South Africa 5193 110
see more
Rank Team Points Rating
1 Pakistan 7748 277
2 England 4253 266
3 South Africa 4720 262
4 India 8620 261
5 Australia 5471 261
see more