India turned around their wretched start to the T20 World Cup with a sensational showing with the bat, smashing 210 against Afghanistan in Abu Dhabi with the openers putting on a 140-run partnership.
After losing the toss and being asked to bat first, India seemed determined to change the narrative around their T20 batting. KL Rahul and Rohit Sharma came out all guns blazing and blasted more than 50 runs in the powerplay.
The outrageous start they had was perfectly complemented by some extraordinary hitting from Rishabh Pant and Hardik Pandya in the latter stages of the innings, so much so that they ended up making 65 runs in the last four overs.
Afghanistan, who had been pretty good with the ball whole tournament, had a disastrous day in the field and it was enough for several fans to raise concerns about ‘match fixing’. It was fuelled by a ludicrous misfield in the Indian innings that helped Rohit get to his fifty.
In the 12th over of the innings, Rohit cut a Naveen-ul-Haq delivery through point where the fielder had to make a regulation stop near the fence. Instead, he dove right across the ball and despite reaching it, tapped it on past the fence for four, much to the shock of several.
WATCH THE HORRIBLE MISFIELD THAT’S UNDER SCRUTINY
— Waqas Ahmed (@ahmedwaqas992) November 3, 2021
With the tweet coming from a Pakistan account, several Indian and Pakistan fans engaged with it with accusations floating both ways. While several wondered “how is this not fixing”, a few Indians directed it back at the Pakistan fans, citing their unbeaten run so far as evidence of the tournament being fixed.
It is, whole tournament is otherwise Pakistan won't be winning matches
— Akki (@CrickPotato) November 3, 2021
AFG team is dropping catches, doing misfielding, giving half volleys..fixing is a small word for the farce that I am watching right now lol. It is about lifting the run rate too.
Even the crowd has stopped celebrating. They are like oh this is too much now lol. what a farce.
— Hippopotamus (@HipoFaarRahaHai) November 3, 2021
— Young Veteran (@YoungVeteran89) November 3, 2021
They fielded horribly against Pakistan, too. Didn’t see anyone claiming it was fixed then? https://t.co/aD3nUbhzVo
— Brashna Kasi (@Brashnaa) November 3, 2021
Is it possible to push a ball like that mistakenly 😂😁 https://t.co/cB2jW9EVOw
— زبیر (@Aadamzai) November 3, 2021
"How is this not fixed" Wealthy privileged colonial mentality mocking an innocent error by Afghanistan, a developing cricket side with an inspiring story trying their best to inspire their people in a difficult time.
For shame. https://t.co/dqNccl7R9R
— Cheema (@CheemaNFL) November 3, 2021
A few others also questioned Mujeeb-ur-Rahman’s absence from the game, although he was evidently injured last game and might have missed the match due to a sustained injury.