ICC Cricket World Cup 2019: India-New Zealand semi-final pushed into ‘reserve day’

Omkar Paranjape
Wednesday, 10 July 2019

On Tuesday in Manchester, with India having completed 46.1 overs, it began drizzling, which further picked up and transformed into heavy rainfall.

MANCHESTER: India versus New Zealand and rain!

It might have been the big semi-final, but the narrative remained the same!

Incidentally, the round-robin game of the World Cup 2019 between the two in Nottingham called off without the toss. On Tuesday in Manchester, with India having completed 46.1 overs, it began drizzling, which further picked up and transformed into heavy rainfall.

Under heavy cloud cover, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah had the New Zealand batsmen struggling to score, but half-centuries from Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor held the innings together as New Zealand crawled to 211/5 in 46.1 overs.

The drama unfolded from ball one. Bhuvneshwar got the ball to move after pitching and it rapped Martin Guptill on the pads. Declared not out by the umpire, Virat Kohli went upstairs. But with the ball missing leg, India lost their review first ball. That, however, didn’t mean New Zealand had it easy. 

In fact, Bhuvneshwar and Bumrah were so tidy with the new ball that it took 17 balls for New Zealand to put their first runs on the board.

Martin Guptill’s woeful tournament turned from bad to worse. Bumrah received extra bounce and the opener, poking outside off, edged to Kohli at second slip. For the sixth time, Williamson walked out inside five overs and was immediately tested by Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar’s pace and the overcast weather aiding them.

There wasn’t much swing, but some movement off the surface. Williamson brought out his dabs to third man and fine leg, but India, with a short point, backward point and a gully had him working hard for runs.

But Williamson did what he does best. Rotate the strike and keep the scoreboard moving. 27 for 1 after 10 meant New Zealand could not afford to waste too many overs and he cashed in on the rare loose deliveries bowled by India.

Hardik Pandya’s lack of pace couple by a short length deliveries allowed Williamson to collect two boundaries, but from there, India tied them down remarkably. 

Yuzvendra Chahal conceded 28 off his first six overs, and with Pandya and Jadeja, gave New Zealand just 20 runs between over 19 and 27.

But they failed to seriously up the run rate, with Taylor in particular regularly mistiming his shots. 

Still, he hung around until the final overs and was unloading before the rain came. 

The 44th over, off Yuzvendra Chahal, went for 18 runs, which was by far the best for New Zealand throughout the innings.

Chahal had the most expensive figures of 1-63 off 10 overs but he did snare the prized wicket of the Kiwi captain Williamson, who chopped a top-edge to point.

Jimmy Neesham (12) and Colin de Grandhomme (16) quickly came and went, and Tom Latham was in the middle on 3 with Taylor when play was stopped.

Umpires can reduce the number of overs to the minimum of 20 per side, which is needed to achieve a result.

The winner plays England or Australia in the final at Lord’s on July 14. The second semi-final is at Edgbaston on Thursday.

The Taylor-de Grandhomme partnership had raced to 35 off 19 balls but Bhuvneshwar returned to break the partnership. 

After Taylor reviewed an LBW call to earn a reprieve, de Grandhomme, opting for a uppish cut, nicked to Dhoni. 

A comical overthrow which resulted in New Zealand converting a single into three was followed by a couple of singles before the interruption.

It rained heavily for almost two hours and just when conditions seemed to be improving, fresh spell of rain came pouring down again. 

After an inspection around 1810 local time, umpires Richard Illingworth and Richard Kettleborough made the call to push the semi-final match into the reserve day.

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