New Zealand, on the fourth day, completed the dominating series sweep over India in the two-match Test series. The visitors were expected to put up a fight in their second innings. But a poor show from their batsmen continued even as the Kiwi bowlers, Tim Southee and Trent Boult, wreaked havoc with their exceptional swing bowling. After bundling out India for 124 runs, New Zealand chased down 132 runs without breaking a sweat and completed the formalities.
As far as the match is concerned, after losing the toss, India applied themselves better compared to Wellington. Three of their batsmen, Prithvi Shaw, Cheteshwar Pujara and Hanuma Vihari, scored half-centuries. But they failed to convert it into a big score eventually getting bowled out to 242 runs. Rather they collapsed from being 194/4 to 242/10.
Kyle Jamieson picked up his maiden five-wicket haul and continued his dream start to international career with an impactful 49 with the bat as well. Indian bowlers came back well on the second morning to leave the Kiwis stunned. In fact, the visitors were in a position to take around the 50-run lead. But Jamieson played a vital hand in New Zealand posting 235 runs in their first innings.
India capitulate in the second innings
India now had to bat well to give their bowlers a chance to pick 10 wickets of the opposition. But they capitulated in front of some brilliant swing bowling from Southee and Boult who were near unplayable at times. Apart from Pujara, none of the batsmen could blunt the opposition bowlers and eventually they were bundled out for 124. Boult was the most successful bowler with the figures of 4/28 while Southee picked three wickets.
Needing to gun down 132 runs on a tricky wicket, New Zealand needed a good start and their openers, Tom Blundell and Tom Latham did just the same. They added 103 runs for the opening wicket before Latham was dismissed by Umesh Yadav. There was little bit of procession then with Kane Williamson and Blundell too getting out quickly. Ross Taylor and Henry Nicholls then completed the formalities as the Kiwis kept their proud home record intact.
Man of the Match, Kyle Jamieson said:
It’s been pretty surreal couple of weeks, just to be part of the group and win a couple of matches feels good. Pitch conditions obviously help and trying to find the fuller length and making decisions more often about the length and sometimes natural variations take over.
It’s certainly time that I work on a lot on my batting, especially batting lower down the order and in both Tests the partnerships down the order have made a difference. Having had a small taste of Test cricket, it’s important to work on things and come back better.
New Zealand skipper, Kane Williamson said:
Outstanding feeling. Fairly sporting surfaces in both Tests. Bowlers had to put it in the right areas, but this pitch played well on all the days, even though history suggests it flattens out after doing a bit initially. I think therein lies the value of the 30-40 run partnerships. I don’t think the end result shows how tight that match was.
We saw how many times the ball beat the bat. A fantastic series from outside and the way the guys stuck in. India are a world-class side and to beat them is quite satisfying. Jamieson’s a very exciting talent, and contributed incredibly well with both bat and ball in both games. He’s tall and gets bounce which is very helpful in these conditions. The runs he scored in the backend of both games were very valuable. Great progress for him.
The guys had to be disciplined, and the wicket was doing enough, but the fast outfields did allow runs, and it was important to hang in there. A few heavy learning curves, a few good bits in this summer, but these are all part of it. You’re always trying to improve and the two games here have been opportunities to learn too.
India skipper, Virat Kohli said:
I think it was a matter of not having enough intent in the first game. We played well in the first innings here with the bat. We also need to give credit to the New Zealand bowlers, they bowled in the right areas long enough, created a lot of pressure. There were hardly any opportunities, that meant you have to play extravagant shots for runs than just keep rotating strike.
It was a combination of us not having the right kind of execution and New Zealand playing well. The consistency of their bowling was outstanding, forced us to do mistakes. We are usually a batting side that fights. Batsmen didn’t do enough for the bowlers to attack. It’s disappointing as a side when the batsmen don’t back up the effort of the bowlers.
To win series and matches outside home you need to have a balanced performance with bat and ball and in the field – take those chances as well. We need to go back, understand what went wrong and correct those things moving forward.
We are not a side that thinks about the result of the toss. Yes it did give a bit of extra advantage to the bowlers in the first two hours of each Test, but as an international side playing so well over two, three seasons, you are expected to go out and execute in those conditions. We were not able to do that this time. We are not going to take excuses from this tour, just the learning and the mistakes we committed and try and improve as we move forward.
T20s were pretty good. In the ODIs it was good to see the youngsters stepping up with Rohit not being available and me not getting runs. Those are a few positives, but as a Test team we were not able to play the kind of cricket we wanted to. We need to accept we were not good enough, take it on the chin and improve those things.
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