A clinical New Zealand team routed Team India in the two-match Test series beating them by seven wickets at Hagley Oval in Christchurch. Trent Boult and Tim Southee made light work of the Indian lower order, before fifties from openers Tom Latham and Tom Blundell set New Zealand for a convincing win. Meanwhile, the umpires had to warn Virat Kohli & Co as they tried to confuse the Kiwi batters during their second innings.
Resuming the day at a precarious 90/6, India looked desperate to hit their way out of trouble, with Hanuma Vihari and Rishabh Pant trying to go hard. But with the ball moving about sharply, and New Zealand’s bowlers consistently nailing their mark, it was never an option. Boult and Southee combined well to wage off the Indian tail and bowl out for only 124 runs setting up a target of 132 runs.
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Defending just 131, India would have hoped, and even expected, to pick up early wickets, given the amount of spice in the pitch, but Tom Latham and Tom Blundell rode the storm. They ground their way to a 46-run stand at lunch but came out with far more attacking intent in the second session. Jasprit Bumrah managed to make some inroads picking a couple of New Zealand wickets but by that time, they were cruising to the landmark.
Latham and Blundell departed for individual scores of 52 and 55 but host needed only 11 runs by then which Ross Taylor and Henry Nicholls gave them. With that win, New Zealand claimed all 120 points from the series to move to third on the points table, 34 points clear of fourth-placed England but still trailing second-placed Australia by 116 points. India continue to lead the table with 360 points.
New Zealand sweep India 2-0!
It’s a seven-wicket victory for the @BLACKCAPS and they take all 120 World Test Championship points!
— ICC (@ICC) March 2, 2020
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Meanwhile, the Indian cricketers opted a unique technique to get the New Zealand batsmen out after their bowlers failed to draw blood with the new ball. One of the fielders was heard shouting “two” in the fourth over of the final innings although New Zealand openers were taking just one run. Umpire Richard Kettleborough heard it and immediately took action.
He was seen having a word with Indian skipper Virat Kohli, who tried to justify his player’s actions by trying to suggest that he was just trying to alert the fielder at the fine leg of the possibility of a second run.
“No shouting two,” umpire Kettleborough told Kohli. “You shouted two there. No you’re not, you shouted here, enough please.”
Watch the video here:
— faceplatter49 (@faceplatter49) March 2, 2020