Some poor shot selection leds India to pay the price as New Zealand clinched the fourth cricket ODI by 19 runs to level the five-match series which is now 2-2 in Ranchi on Wednesday 26 october 2016. The target was set for 281 runs on a slowish track by New Zealand team. Indian team was on 128 for 2 before a sudden middle order collapse due to the loss of four quick wickets as they were finally all-out for 241 in 48.4 overs.This was India’s first loss at the ODI Captain and Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s home ground in all the international matches that they have played so far.
Wickets in the middle overs heavily dented India’s chances where they kept losing batsmen at crucial junctures. Rohit Sharma fell early at just 11 runs, then Ajinkya Rahane and Virat Kohli joined forces to lead the team and chase the target. The duo had settled well on the field with Rahane looking in a good form. Rahane then larruped Trent Boult for a four and a six in an over and then scored two more fours off Tim Southee in three deliveries. Kohli was in his usual solid self and was inching towards another fifty of his career after two fours and a six. He then fell to an ordinary delivery from Sodhi, caught by the keeper while attempting a cut at 45 runs. That partnership was worth 78 runs.
Kohli’s departure was followed by a roaring welcome from the crowd in the stands to local boy MS Dhoni who was fresh. But it was Rahane who was performing well and making all the right noises by hitting a half-century. Punishing a weak short delivery from left arm spinner Anton Devcich for a four rahane made his half-century.At 126 runs with 2 wickets in 23 overs, a well set Rahane and Dhoni in the middle, India must have visualised their chances of closing out the ODI series in Ranchi but, James Neesham had some other plans. He failed to get going with the bat and score good runs but more than made up for it with two deadly strikes from which India failed to recover. His first victim was A.Rahane, trapped in front for 57 in the 28th over. His next target left the crowd in the stands stunned as he let one slip through the gates of Dhoni, taking his wicket for just for 11 runs and suddenly India were in a spot of bother at 135/4.
India Loses The 4th ODI And New Zealand Ties The Series By 2-2
New Zealand’s Southee picked two wickets and left India in a full blown crisis. His first wicket was mostly due to an excellent fielding effort from Tom Latham who pulled off a brilliant catch to dismiss Manish Pandey for 11 runs. Next man Kedar Jadhav was late in bringing his bat resulted an lbw in the first-ball for a duck. By the end of 35 overs, India needed 100 runs more to win with just four wickets remaining.
The chase wasn’t a prior conclusion with two all rounders still left as Axar Patel and Hardik Pandya in the middle but the New Zealand bowlers kept things tight. With the asking rate growing continuously, H.Pandya was forced to play risky shots and the result was another catch to Latham. Axar fought, thrilling the crowd which had already started deserting the stands, with a straight six off Neesham and his partnership with Amit Mishra kept things interesting in the match before a terrible mix-up sent A.Mishra back to the pavilion. Axar was out at 38 – his highest score in ODIs and though Dhawal Kulkarni kept the blinking Indian hopes alive with an unbeaten 25 but, it wasn’t enough.
New Zealand were able to score 260 was largely due to a half-century from Martin Guptill as. Needing a win to keep the series living, New Zealand began to play on the front foot winning the toss for the first time on the tour. And a strong and firm opening stand set the ball rolling before the Indian bowlers could applied the squeeze in the middle overs. Guptill and sublime Tom Latham began the proceedings on a very solid footing. The combination worked pretty well for the NZ’s and they collected 80 runs from the first 10 overs.
Between over no 11 and 15, Indian bowlers Axar and Amit Mishra only allowed the NZ’s to score 14 runs between them and the pressure got to Latham. Then he attempted a sweep that resulted in a leading edge to short fine-leg, cutting short his promising knock at 39. Meanwhile, Guptill completed his 31st ODI fifty and together with captain Williamson, took the innings forward. It was H.Pandya who made the breakthrough in his second spell, taking Guptill’s wicket.
New Zealand Wins The 4th ODI And Equals The Series
The match was fun to watch and very entertaining too. Now let’s hope that 5th ODI is in our favour and we hope that India wins the series. FINGERS CROSSED!