Melbourne: Rohit Sharma blasted a strokeful century as defending champions India stormed into the semi-finals of the ICC Cricket World Cup by thrashing a hapless Bangladesh by 109 runs in a lop-sided contest here today.
Riding on Rohit’s spectacular 137 off 126 balls and his rollicking 122-run fourth wicket stand in only 15.5 overs with the belligerent Suresh Raina (65), India were able to post a commendable 302 for six after opting to bat at the MCG.
In reply, Bangladesh were never in the contention as India hardly took their foot off the pedal to dismiss their neighbours for a paltry 193 in 45 overs without hardly breaking a sweat. The juggernaut continues to roll on for Mahendra Singh Dhoni and his men who have now recorded their seventh win on the trot in this mega event.
India will now meet the winner of the third quarter-final between Australia and Pakistan at Sydney on March 26.
The victory took the tally of India’s successive World Cup victories to 11, including four in the last edition, as it was yet another easy outing for the title contenders.
Such has been Indias domination that whenever they have batted first in the tournament, they have scored 300 or more and taken all 70 opposition wickets in seven matches so far.
Umesh Yadav (4/31 in 9 overs) was bang on target during his entire spell despite a flurry of boundaries in Tamim Iqbals run-a-ball 25 that ended with Dhoni taking a low catch off the bowler.
Imrul Kayes (5) was run-out due to a mix-up. Two in-form players in left-hander Soumya Sarkar (29) and Mahmudullah Riyadh (21) steadied the ship with 40 un stand before Shikhar Dhawan took an acrobatic catch to get rid of the latter on the boundary line.
Once Mahmudullah was gone there was an air of inevitability about the result with Soumya Sarkar being caught by Dhoni diving to his left and Shakib Al Hasan caught at backward point of Jadeja.
Mohammed Shami (2/37 in 8 overs) took his wickets tally to 17 while Ravichandran Ashwin (0/30 in 10 overs) and Ravindra Jadeja (2/42 in 8 overs) again operated well in tandem with big MCG boundaries as cushion.