Gautam Gambhir sees India through

Gautam Gambhir guides one towards third man AFP

Gautam Gambhir didn't look a million dollars, but made a satisfactory return to the side, seeing India through to a bonus point with 82 after his opening partner, Virender Sehwag ran through the Bangladesh tail.

India looked good for a bonus point for most parts of their reply, except for a few anxious moments when Shakib removed Virat Kohli and Rohit in two deliveries to reduce India to 80 for 3. It would have amounted to something for Bangladesh had Tamim at third man hung on to a simple offering from Gambhir, a blow that would have made it 93 for 4. It could well have been the inadequate flood lighting that Lasith Malinga spoke about at work.

That drop apart, Gambhir batted well, working hard, running hard, putting behind the occasional play-and-miss, and scoring mainly through nurdles and chips. Along with Virender Sehwag, he provided India a brisk start. India were 37 in the seventh over when Sehwag edged one outside off.

Gambhir then settled down for a hard-working innings in hot and humid conditions, and Mashrafe Mortaza and Syed Rasel did their bit in making him work hard. His most flashy shot of the innings was when he danced down the track and drove Mortaza through the covers to reach 21 off 27, taking India to 46 in the ninth over. Post the supper break, Shafiul Islam and Shakib too kept the batsmen honest.

After Shakib's double blow in the 15th over, Gambhir nearly let Bangladesh back in when he played a weak upper-cut off Shafiul. Tamim got under it, but never looked confident during that drop. Gambhir was 48 then. By the time he finally got out, India needed just 10, with nearly 20 overs to go.