When Ashish Bagai chose to bat, the probability of an early finish in Bangalore increased significantly, but Australia's inevitable supremacy was delayed by an extraordinary attack from 19-year-old Hiral Patel, who batted fearlessly to score a rapid half-century off the world's fastest bowlers. It was a remarkable and memorable assault, a child taking on experienced bowlers renowned for speeds nearly 150 kph.
The build-up to the game was quiet: the Wednesday crowd was thin, the atmosphere sedentary. And then Patel woke everybody up. Using Lee's width and pace, he played two cuts. By the time you blinked, the ball had reached the boundary. He took a third four off Lee's first over with a drive through extra cover. Against Tait, who had focused on bowling full and fast without success, Patel moved back and slammed a length delivery over the cover boundary. After three overs, Canada were 33 for 0.
John Davison's dismissal did not deter Patel. He brought up Canada's 50 off 4.4 overs by edging an attempted loft off Mitchell Johnson so hard that it cleared third man. Realising Patel was at ease with balls in his half, Lee unleashed several short balls and even wanted a chat, but Patel did not bite and simply walked away from confrontation. And when Lee bowled one short ball too many, Patel hooked, and cleared deep-backward square leg. He reached his half-century off 37 deliveries, and after the mandatory Powerplay, Canada were 77 for 1.
Patel's innings ended when, in the 12th over, he went hard at Watson and Johnson held the catch on the edge of the third-man boundary. He walked off, having scored 54 off 45 balls, with his head high. His innings had caught Australia on the hop and ensured Canada would fight, when no one expected them to.