Shreyas Iyer and KL Rahul added 208 runs in 128 balls against the Netherlands in Bengaluru at the ICC Men's Cricket World Cup 2023.
India went close to seven runs an over for the majority of their innings, before picking pace in the final Powerplay. They added 126 runs in the final 10 overs.
Tons from Shreyas Iyer and KL Rahul stood out for the tournament hosts.
India openers were off to a characteristic aggressive start on a decent batting track in Bengaluru. No bowler was spared as 15 boundaries came in the first Powerplay.
Particularly impressive was Shubman Gill's six-hitting prowess, as the young batter managed to outdo his skipper and hit four sixes in the first 10 overs as compared to Rohit's one. However, the latter made up for it by unleashing seven fours in that period.
The duo helped India reach 100 by the 12th over and looked all set for big scores. However, Gill fell to an impressive catch from Teja Nidamanuru.
While newcomer Virat Kohli struggled to adjust to the variations of the Dutch bowlers, Rohit remained his free-flowing self and reached his 50 in the 14th over.
However, he played an ambitious pull against Bas de Leede and ended up losing his wicket after it ballooned towards the wide long-on and was taken by Wesley Barresi. With this wicket, de Leede became the most successful Dutch bowler in the Cricket World Cup with 15 scalps to his name. He overtook his father, Tim de Leede, to achieve this landmark.
After getting set, Kohli took on the bowlers. He unleashed some interesting shots, including a bottom-handed six against Logan van Beek and even the sweep to get some of his boundaries.
Having completed his half-century in the 28th over, Kohli seemed to be gearing up for a record 50th ton. But that was not to be the case as Roelof van der Merwe crashed into his stumps with his left-arm spin.
But as if following a pattern, India kept going at a healthy rate as the set Shreyas Iyer took charge with KL Rahul providing him good support. Iyer reached his fifty with a classic cover drive in the 34th over. This was the first time that top four batters had reached the scores of fifty-plus in an innings of a Cricket World Cup encounter.
This number became five in the 43rd over when Rahul hit his 17th ODI fifty. Having done the hard work during the middle overs, the duo opened their arms in the death and picked up the scoring rate even further. 44th over marked that change, as both batters unleashed big sixes.
Iyer reached his maiden Cricket World Cup ton in the 46th over. Rahul reached a century of his own on the back of consecutive sixes in the 50th over. The hundred took 62 balls. This was the fastest World Cup century by an India batter.
Earlier today, Rohit Sharma won the toss and elected to bat first. Both sides were unchanged ahead of the final group clash in the Cricket World Cup.
India are out to complete a clean sweep of the group stage even while casting one eye towards a semi-final encounter with New Zealand at the ICC Men's Cricket World Cup.
The tournament hosts have claimed eight wins from eight matches thus far but will have to overcome a brave Netherlands outfit to hold onto their perfect record and maintain momentum heading into the knockout stages.
India have match-winners across the board as their top order has been decisive when required and their bowling attack is adept at holding the opposition back.
But all eyes will be on Virat Kohli as the India star chases a 50th ODI hundred to take him past old teammate Sachin Tendulkar for the most centuries in the history of the format.
While the Netherlands sit at the other end of the standings they have shown that they are more than capable of pulling off an upset with an early tournament win over eventual semi-finalists South Africa.
Scott Edwards' side added a comprehensive victory over Bangladesh to now have two triumphs at the Cricket World Cup and arrive at M. Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru with an added motivation to return to the big stage.
Netherlands need a victory to move into the top eight places on the standings that will qualify for the ICC Champions Trophy in Pakistan in 2025.