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Ind v Pak 3rd ODI: India beat Pakistan by 10 runs

MS Dhoni has been in terrific form for India against Pakistan. (FILE)

By Staff

India pulled off a thrilling 10-run victory after Pakistan collapsed from 144 for six to 157 all out in the final one-day international to avoid a series sweep against their rivals.

India managed to wrest a consolation win and avoid a series whitewash against the tourists to bring some cheer to one of the coldest days in New Delhi.

The home team's bowling attack, often criticised as being toothless, rose to the occasion, defending a small total of 167 runs and bowled out the opposition for 157.

Pakistan appeared set to complete the whitewash after bowling India out for 167 and then getting solid contributions from Misbah-ul-Haq and Nasir Jamshed who put their innings back on track after two down for 14.
Although fellow opener Kamran Akmal went for a duck and Younis Khan soon followed for six, Jamshed later named man of the series made 34 before being trapped lbw by Ravichandran Ashwin.
Misbah took the score along to 113 before departing for 39, caught by Ajinkya Rahane off Ashwin in the slips.
Pakistan wobbled thereafter with Shoaib Malik managing only five and Umar Akmal then stumped by Dhoni for 25, leaving the tourists on 125 for six.
Mohammad Hafeez and Umar Gul steadied the ship and looked to have them in a winning position with a little over 10 overs to go, but when Gul fell for 11, triggering a dramatic collapse with Saeed Ajmal following six balls later for one and Junaid Khan run out without scoring.
With seven balls left and Pakistan still 11 shy of their target, but Hafeez was caught by Yuvraj Singh at short mid-wicket to give Ishant Sharma his third wicket and wrap up victory which restored some pride for India.

Pakistan made steady progress at the halfway stage of their innings after running into heavy weather at chasing a modest target of 168.

After Misbah's  departure, from a comfortable 113 for three, Pakistan suddenly slumped to 125 for six to add some drama to the proceedings and raise hopes of a dramatic Indian victory.

Hafeez, who came down the order, was dropped by Rahane off Ashwin, which did not prove costly fortunately for India. 

The visitors aiming for a clean sweep of the ODI series were rocked by the early dismissals of Kamran Akmal and Younis Khan before Jamshed and skipper Misbah repaired the damage with a 47-run stand.

Ashwin broke through by trapping Jamshed leg before with his third delivery but Misbah got a reprieve on 27 when Dhoni failed to latch on to sharp edge off left arm spinner Ravindra Jadeja.

Jamshed had punched the previous delivery to mid on for a boundary but attempting to sweep him missed the line and was rapped on the front foot.

He departed for 34 after facing 64 balls and hit five boundaries during a 47-run partnership with Misbah for the fourth wicket.

After the early loss of Akmal and Younis Khan, Pakistan reached 51 for two after 18 overs.

Kumar bowled an unchanged opening spell of 10-2-31-2 dismissing Kamran and bowling Younis Khan with a beauty to rock Pakistan.

The visitors seemed to be choking against India's new fast bowling pair of Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Shami Ahmed managing just 22 for the loss of Kamran and Younus Khan in the first 10 overs.

It was the worst start by Pakistan in the series after having dominated the opening two one-day matches in every department of the game.

In contrast, India despite being rocked by the pace of Mohammad Irfan and Junaid Khan managed to make 38 for 3 in the first 10 Powerplay overs.

Kumar struck a double blow when he knocked the middle stump of Younis Khan to put Pakistan on the back foot at 14 for two in the seventh over.

Ahmed, a 22 year old from Bengal, was a revelation as he tightened the screws at one end with his nagging accuracy and movement.

Kumar gave India another sensational start when he trapped Kamran with an in dipper in the third over of the innings with just three runs on the board.

Debutant Shami Ahmed bowled a maiden in his first over in one-day internationals putting pressure on the Pakistani batsmen at one end.

He was despatched to the square leg boundary by left hander Jamshed in his third over but he kept his composure to bowl a second maiden over.

India's bowling was backed up by some marvellous fielding by the young guns in particular as they threw themselves at everything spiritedly defending a small total.

Jamshed picked another boundary off Ahmed but skipper Misbah ul Haq played down a maiden from Kumar.

Misbah finally got into his stride with an elegant straight drive off Kumar.

India were bowled out for a meagre 167 in 43.4 overs after opting to bat first at Feroze Shah Kotla Stadium in Delhi.

After Mohammad Irfan and Junaid Khan had ripped through the top order, India were tormented by the mesmerising spin of Saeed Ajmal who finished with a career best haul of 5 for 24.

Ravindra Jadeja who had whacked Ajmal for a six earlier, was the last man out holing out to Umar Akmal at long on.

India's top order caved in meekly yet again though it was Hafeez who took the big wicket of Yuvraj with a sharp turner.

Indian skipper MS Dhoni and Suresh Raina attempted to conjure another recovery adding 48 runs for the fifth wicket.

But Ajmal sliced through the rest of the batting, with four of his victims being trapped leg before.

Raina made 31 off 60 balls with two boundaries and a six.

Dhoni top scored with a defiant 36 off 55 balls with three sixes and a boundary before miscuing one to Umar Akmal in the deep off Umar Gul.

Left-hander Jadeja hit a massive six off Ajmal to surpass the 165 they made in the second ODI in Kolkata.

The Indian tail seem to be wagging with Ishant Sharma clubbing Ajmal to the midoff boundary to open his account.

But Ajmal had the last laugh as Sharma drove straight back to him with the bowler taking the return catch after a bit of a juggle.

Earlier, Jadeja hit Gul for a massive six straight down the ground.

It was an all too familiar situation for India captain MS Dhoni who walked with India four down and Raina at the other end.

Hafeez got the big wicket of Yuvraj Singh who was beaten by delivery which spun to take his off stump as India collapsed to 63 for 4 by the 16th over.

Yuvraj made 23 off 23 balls and hit four boundaries during a 26-run partnership with Rain a for the fourth wicket.

India finally attacked as the introduction of Umar Gul saw Yuvraj punching him for two boundaries in three balls to bring up the 50 of the Indian innings in the 15th over.

Suresh Raina hit a no-ball free hit to the square leg fence as 18 runs come in the most productive over for India.

The Pakistan new ball pair finished their opening spells with figures of 7-1-28-2 (Irfan) and 7-1-12-1 (Junaid).

Pakistan's Mohammad Irfan and Junaid Khan bowling with their tails high and attacked the Indian batsmen when it should have been the other way round especially in the Powerplay overs.

India once again failed to take advantage of the Powerplay overs being throttled by the Pakistan new ball attack of Mohammad Irfan and Junaid Khan.

After the initial flurry of boundaries from Yuvraj Singh, he settled down to repair the damage with Suresh Raina against the tearaway pace duo.

India slumped to 37 for three with Virat Kohli going to superb catch taken low down by Younis Khan at second slip off Junaid Khan.

Kohli faced 17 balls to score 7 with one boundary.

Yuvraj Singh hit consecutive boundaries off the first two deliveries he faced from Irfan to give India some hope.

India lost their second wicket for 29 in the ninth over with Gautam Gambhir cutting a Mohammad Irfan delivery to point after making 15 off 27 balls with one boundary.

India seem to be struggling again with Mohammad Irfan sending down a maiden in the seventh over.

Virat Kohli, another batsman who has been struggling for runs against Pakistan, hit the first ball he face from Irfan to the midwicket fence.

India must have rued the decision to rest Virender Sehwag after Mohammed Irfan ended Ajinkya Rahane's agonising stay at the crease getting a faint outside edge to be caught behind by Kamran Akmal.

Rahane who replaced Sehwag opened his account with a boundary off Irfan by cutting him to third man after facing eight deliveries.

Gautam Gambhir hit the first boundary of the match flicking a delivery from Irfan to fine leg but survived a confident caught behind appeal next ball.