Published: Thu, July 11, 2019
Sport | By Wilson Duncan

Virat Kohli: India captain says New Zealand defeat broke their hearts

Virat Kohli: India captain says New Zealand defeat broke their hearts

NEW DELHI: Commentator and former Indian cricketer Sanjay Manjrekar, who was subjected to criticism for calling Ravindra Jadeja a "bits and pieces cricketer", finally lauded the smashing cricketer for his all-round performance against New Zealand in the semi-final of the ongoing ICC Men's Crick World Cup.

Defending 239-8, Matt Henry and Trent Boult blew away India's star-studded top order that included Kohli and Rohit Sharma, the tournament's leading scorer, to reduce them to five for three wickets inside four overs.

At that stage, India were strong favourites but within 19 balls of the chase beginning, the game had been turned on its head. "In fact, he got some momentum going India's way", the Kiwi captain said. He was nearly right.

Earlier, on 9th July, New Zealand won the toss and opted to bat first in the first semi-final of the World Cup. Congrats to NZ on making it to the Finals & all the best for the same.

Indian fans though were prompt to give back to Waqar remembering him of Pakistan's chequered history with match fixing and how he got slammed by Ajay Jadeja in 1996 World Cup quarter final. All-rounder Jadeja rode his luck, almost holing out to Taylor off Neesham, but he was the only Indian batsman scoring at more than a run a ball and the pair rallied valiantly to need 52 from the final 30 balls of their innings. "But, the way they came out and bowled in that first half an hour really was the difference in the game".

It was clear that Jadeja and Dhoni were of the same mindset and as Boult prepared to bowl the 48th over, the 37 from 18 balls required seemed eminently possible.

Resuming on the reserve day at 211-5, they added 28 runs from the remaining 23 deliveries as Ross Taylor top-scored with a gutsy 74 to go with Kane Williamson's 67.

It would be the 33rd over before they finally broke into three figures, MS Dhoni coming well down the track to strike the first six of India's innings. Dhoni followed an over later, narrowly run out by another outstanding direct hit, this time from Martin Guptill, for 50.

"We spoke about the conditions during the interval, we wanted to put the ball in good areas and move the ball around and put some pressure on India, they are a world-class side".

But Williamson said he was not surprised to see his team come through to set up a final on Sunday against England or Australia.

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