Controversy has erupted at the T20 World Cup, with viewers claiming India star Ravindra Jadeja was robbed of one of the catches of the tournament, during his side's crucial win against Afghanistan.
Having lost their first two matches to Pakistan and New Zealand, Virat Kohli's men kept their chances of making the semi-finals alive with a 66-run victory over Afghanistan.
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KL Rahul and Rohit Sharma both hit half-centuries to help India rack up a formidible 2-210 - the highest score of the tournament so far.
Mohammed Shami then took three wickets to help limit Afghanistan to 7-144.
That score for the Afghans might have been even lower if Jadeja wasn't denied what many referred to as the catch of the World Cup in the 18th over.
Jadeja enhanced his reputation as one of the best fielders in world cricket by taking a spectacular diving effort at full stretch.
The catch was sent up to the third umpire for checking, with replays suggesting that he caught it cleanly before his hands hit the turf.
Unfortunately for Jadeja and India fans, the third umpire ruled that Jadeja's fingers weren't completely under the ball when it brushed the ground.
The controversial incident sparked a wave of backlash on social media, with many fans insisting Jadeja was "robbed" of an incredible catch.
— Abhishek (@be_mewadi) November 3, 2021
Catch of the tournament robbed. Sir Jadeja!
— Silly Point (@FarziCricketer) November 3, 2021
Jadeja was winning the catch of the tournament, and then the third umpire happened.
— Saurabh Malhotra (@MalhotraSaurabh) November 3, 2021
When the fingers are underneath the ball, would you consider it as a not out? That was a fair catch given not out. Jadeja is a brilliant fielder yet again @imjadeja. Poor umpiring. #INDvsAFG pic.twitter.com/g6ZKbQq0gS
— Baskar Raja (@winterbear_3) November 3, 2021
— Journalist_Rakshit Yadav (@RakshitYadav25) November 3, 2021
TV umpire decisions can be brutal at times. Impact on the ground will obviously make the ball pop a bit but Jadeja did catch it cleanly. Fielders are not wearing mitts. Cut them some slack. Feel for Jadeja. Top catch.#T20WorldCup
— Somshuvra Laha (@IamSomshuvra) November 3, 2021
— Yahya 🇵🇰 (@KyaaBatHai) November 3, 2021
Jadeja catch is fantastic but decision is wrong totally injustice#INDvAFG
— brajesh singh (@brajesh99587033) November 3, 2021
India keeps semi-final hopes alive
India opened up with the fourth century partnership in T20 internationals between Rahul and Sharma, which was only broken in the 15th over after they had put on a blistering 140.
Sharma picked out extra cover after a well-struck 74 from 47 deliveries off Karim Janat and Rahul followed two overs later for a 48-ball 69, with Gulbadin Naib beating him with a slower ball yorker.
The wickets only brought Rishabh Pant and Hardik Pandya to the crease, with the pair taking 63 runs from the final four overs.
"Much better wicket," a relieved India captain Virat Kohli declared afterwards.
"In the other two games as well, if we just had two overs of that free-flowing batting capability, that could have sent the message to the opposition that we've put them under pressure."
In reply, Afghanistan fell to 2-13 in the fourth over, including a duck for Mohammad Shahzad.
Despite 19 off 10 from Rahmanullah Gurbaz, Afghanistan were always behind the pace, and were only 4-63 at the halfway mark.
They rallied towards the end of the innings, with Mohammad Nabi hitting 35 and Janat finishing unbeaten on 42 from 22, but it was nowhere near enough.
Despite the big win, India's slim chance to progress into the semi-finals depends on whether they can beat Scotland and Namibia by big margins while other results also go in their favour.
"Net run-rate was on the back of our mind," Kohli added.
"We spoke in the team meeting that we have to focus on the chance we have (to qualify for the semi-finals) and stay positive and hunt that chance down."
India lost to arch rivals Pakistan by 10 wickets and to New Zealand by eight wickets before their top order batsmen finally came good in the third Group 2 game.
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