India registered a resounding victory over new Zealand as the openers starred in an emotional encounter in Delhi. It was also the last match in all forms of cricket for the veteran pacer Ashish Nehra.
Setting the Scene:
The men in Blue had never beaten the Kiwis in their last five attempts, hence it was an important match for them to break that streak. Dew was another factor this time of the year so the toss was presumably vital as well. India were coming on the back of a ODI series win and the Kiwis were aiming to continue their domination over India in this format.
India 202 for 3 (Dhawan 80, Rohit 80) beat New Zealand 149 for 8 (Latham 39) by 53 runs.
Winning the toss, New Zealand chose to bowl first. Though the decision was okay, their fielders made a mess of it. Rohit, Dhawan and Kohli all were dropped and all the three hurt the Kiwis big time, more the openers of India.
Both the openers were in blistering form
Rohit and Dhawan both scored 80 and put up a gigantic 158 run partnership for the first wicket. Kohli also played a stormy cameo in the end to take India over 200. It was 202 for 3 after 20 overs in a Kotla pitch that is not famous for high scores, so a tough chase was written all over.
The Kiwi reply was dreadful. They lost both Guptill and Munro within the first four overs. The pacers along with the spinners bowled extremely well. Yuzvendra Chahal and Axar Patel not only picked couple each but were economical as well. Latham fought hard but he succumbed to the rapidly rising asking rate as well. Some hefty blows in the end by Santner only lowered the margin as India registered a 53 run victory over the Blackcaps.
It was the last match for the 39 year old pacer who has often been stopped by his injuries, but never gave up. Nehra got an amazing reception by both the Kotla crowd and his team. It was a fitting good bye for the forever smiling man. Thank you Nehra Ji!
Man of the Match: Shikhar Dhawan