India lost their first away bilateral ODI series in two years (last one was in England back in 2018) on Saturday (February 8) after New Zealand beat them by 22 runs in second game of the three-match series at the Eden Park. Chasing a modest 274 to win none of the top-order Indian batsmen came out with a significant performance as the visitors were bowled out for 251 in the 49th over.
India were rattled early in their run-chase as the openers Mayank Agarwal and Prithvi Shaw once again failed to impress and contributed with just 3 and 24 respectively. Skipper Virat Kohli, who is known for his prowess in a run-chase, did appear to be in good form till he was bowled by a peach of a delivery by Tim Southee. It was the ninth occasion in international cricket when Tim Southee got the better of the Indian captain.
K.L. Rahul, who has been in great touch on this tour made just four before getting out to Colin de Grandhomme. After him Shreyas Iyer and Kedar Jadhav did try to form a partnership, but once they got out after making 54 and 9, the Kiwi bowlers tightened their grip in the match.
However, towards the end Navdeep Saini and Ravindra Jadeja stitched a 76-run partnership and brought the visitors back in contention. Saini was, in particular, very impressive as he took all the New Zealand bowlers to the cleaners as he scored 45 off 49 balls. He smashed five fours and two sixes and entertained the crowd before getting cleaned up by debutant pacer Kyle Jamieson.
Chahal did try to keep the Men in Blue in the game, but the nerves got the better of him.
Chahal got run-out in the 48th over after scoring 10. Jadeja was the last wicket to fall as he lost his wicket while trying to go for a maximum. The left-handed all-rounder top-scored for India with 55, but his efforts were not able to allow the Men in Blue to take the series into decider.
Earlier, put into bat, Martin Guptill and Henry Nicholls provided a steady opening start of 93 runs. But in the middle overs, they lost their way and tottering at 197 for 8. From there Ross Taylor stood tall alongside Jamieson with an unbeaten 76-run partnership ninth wicket, which took the the home team to a competitive total on that slowish pitch.
For the Black Caps, Martin Guptill top scored with 79, followed by Taylor who contributed with an invaluable 72 runs and remained at the crease till the end of the innings.
For his all-round show, the 25-year old Jamieson was given the ‘Player of the Match’ award.
The third and final ODI of the series will be played at the Bay Oval in Mount Maunganui on Tuesday (February 11).
New Zealand 273/8 in 50 overs (Martin Guptill 79, Ross Taylor 73*; Yuzvendra Chahal 3-58) beat India 251 all out in 48.3 overs (Ravindra Jadeja 55, Shreyas Iyer 52; Tim Southee 2-41, Kyle Jamieson 2-42) by 22 runs.
Player of the match: Kyle Jamieson