R Ashwin's audacious India total prediction in 3rd ODI against New Zealand sends Twitter into a meltdown

Published on Jan 24, 2023 02:49 PM IST

After New Zealand captain Tom Latham won the toss and surprisingly invited India to bat, Rohit Sharma and Shubman Gill went berserk to give the team an explosive start.

R Ashwin expects a massive total from India against New Zealand in 3rd ODI at Indore(Getty/BCCI)
R Ashwin expects a massive total from India against New Zealand in 3rd ODI at Indore(Getty/BCCI)
By, New Delhi

Hoping to inflict a 3-0 whitewash on New Zealand, India got off to a roaring start in the third ODI at Indore on Tuesday. After New Zealand captain Tom Latham won the toss and surprisingly invited India to bat, Rohit Sharma and Shubman Gill went berserk to give the team an explosive start. At the end of 10 overs, India's total read a stunning 82 for no loss, one of their most amazing starts of all time, prompting the inevitable question. Are India on the way to register their highest ODI total of all time?

Given how bonkers Rohit and Gill went, R Ashwin has added fuel to fire, predicting a 400-plus total for the Men in Blue. And with the run-rate sailing at over 8 runs an over, Ashwin's 'early call' could well turn into a reality. "400 plus score today? #earlycall #INDvsNZ," the India spinner tweeted. Ashwin's bold prediction sent the Twitter into a frenzy, with many forecasting a record-breaking day for Team India and their individual batters. India have breached the 400-run mark six times in ODIs and today could well be a seventh.

Also Read: India vs New Zealand Live Score 3rd ODI

Gill has already hammered a double century earlier in the series, whereas Rohit is no stranger to peeling off double tons. With both batters putting up a century partnership off just 76 balls, these are ominous signs for New Zealand. After playing out a quiet first four overs in which India scored 17 with three boundary, the next three were full of carnage despite their being a maiden from Lockie Ferguson. The highlight was the eight over, in which Gill went crazy and smoked Ferguson for 22 runs – with 4 fours and two sixes. Two overs later, Rohit smashed two sixes and a four to collect 17 off the 10th.

Indore has been a happy hunting ground for batters over the years and the pitch for today's surface doesn't appear too different. It was at this very venue that Virender Sehwag scored his ODI double century in 2011, and on the eve of the match, even coach Rahul Dravid pointed out how this isn't a venue bowlers love to come to.

"Not the biggest stadiums going around. 60-61m on the sides, 69m straight and just 54 behind the stumps. It is going to be tough for the bowlers. You saw a bit of joy for the Indian pacers up front. I don't think that is going to be the case here. There is an even covering of grass through the middle of the pitch to hold it together and as the evening progresses, the ball will only skid on. Bare patches closer to the batters but I don't think it is going to matter because the pitch looks very firm and good for batting. If anything, because it's an afternoon start, might hold on a bit in the start of the innings, but it will only keep getting better and it's a batting day," Danny Morrison and Ajit Agarkar said about the pitch.

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