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Virat Kohli, Shami shine as India beat New Zealand in Champions Trophy warm-up

Virat Kohli-led India started their ICC Champions Trophy 2017 campaign on a great note by beating New Zealand by 45 runs (Duckworth-Lewis method) in a rain-curtailed game at The Oval on Sunday. Mohammed Shami took three wickets.

icc champions trophy 2017 Updated: May 28, 2017 23:08 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Champions Trophy 2017,ICC Champions Trophy,Virat Kohli
India captain Virat Kohli during a warm-up match against New Zealand ahead of the ICC Champions Trophy 2017.(AFP)

A rain-curtailed match might be a dampener for teams and fans, but on Sunday it threw up positives for India. They beat New Zealand by 45 runs (via Duckworth-Lewis Method) in a warm-up game to start the ICC Champions Trophy 2017 campaign on a positive note. (IND vs NZ: MATCH BLOG)

The first gain for India was the three-wicket haul of Mohammed Shami, who is returning to the national ODI team after two years. The second was skipper Virat Kohli regaining confidence with an unbeaten half-century, post the Royal Challengers Bangalore’s debacle in the Indian Premier League (IPL). (IND vs NZ: SCORECARD)

When Shami was picked for the Champions Trophy, it was the end of a long and agonising wait. On Sunday, he asserted his effectiveness with a three-wicket haul as India bowled out the Black Caps for 189 in 38.4 overs.

Shami, who underwent a knee surgery after India’s semifinal loss in the 2015 World Cup, returned to the Test side but was sidelined midway through the series against England due to ‘knee soreness’. He also had to cope with personal tragedy, his father’s demise.

Although Shami played 10 Tests and the IPL, there was a question over his fitness. In a four-pronged pace attack, Shami was the shining star as he accounted for the wickets of Martin Guptill, Kiwi skipper Kane Williamson and Neil Broom.

What might interest Kohli is that the other pacers – Umesh Yadav, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah – produced disciplined efforts and were economical. While Bhuvneshwar picked three wickets, Umesh got one.

Thanks to the India bowlers’ good show, none of the Kiwi batsmen, apart from Luke Ronchi (66) and James Neesham (46*), could cross 15.

New Zealand batsmen fail

After opting to bat, New Zealand suffered the first jolt in the third over as Shami produced some extra bounce against Guptill, who could not connect properly and was caught by Bhuvneshwar at mid-off.

Williamson too had a brief stay. He edged Shami and was caught by Ajinkya Rahane at slip in the ninth over. Off the next ball, Shami got his third wicket as Broom edged him to wicketkeeper MS Dhoni.

Despite the departure of three batsmen, Ronchi was unperturbed. He completed his half-century off 40 balls. But a long partnership was nowhere near for New Zealand as all-rounder Corey Anderson fell next, to Bhuvneshwar.

With four batsmen in the pavilion, it was time for India’s spinners to come to the fore. Ravindra Jadeja dismissed Ronchi, reducing New Zealand to 110/5. He bowled the right-handed batsman as he missed the flat delivery completely.

It did not take Jadeja long to get his second wicket, Colin De Granhomme charging down the track to be stumped as New Zealand were reduced to 116/6.

It looked like New Zealand would be all out for less than 150, but Neesham had other ideas.

Kohli’s batting

Despite losing opener Rahane for 7, India continued the chase fluently with Shikhar Dhawan (40) and Kohli taking the New Zealand bowlers to task.

The two added 68 runs for the second wicket before Shikhar was caught by Anderson off a short ball from Neesham. Dinesh Karthik fell before opening his account.

Dhoni combined with Kohli to take India to 129/3 in 26 overs before rain stopped play but India were ahead on D/L.

Brief Scores: New Zealand 189 all out in 38.4 overs (L Ronchi 66, J Neesham 46no, M Shami 3/47, Bhuveshwar 3/28, R Jadeja 2/8) lost to India 129/3 in 26 overs (V Kohli 52no, S Dhawan 40; T Southee 1/37, T Boult 1/34, J Neesham 1/11) by 45 runs D/L method

First Published: May 28, 2017 22:58 IST