Bond, Adam script India's disastrous 51-run loss
The Indian team made a mockery of themselves, by losing to Kiwis by 51 runs in the second league encounter of the Videocon Tri-series. The team chasing a modest target of 215 runs, was shot out for 164 runs thanks to some fiery, out-and-out fast bowling by speedster Shane Bond.
Bond's pace meteors - consistently clocking over 145 kmph - ripped the heart of the Indian batting line up, finishing with dandy figures of 6/19.
Only JP Yadav(69) and Irfan Pathan(50) put up a brave front and added some respectability to the Indian total with a 118 run - 9th wicket partnership, after the side had slumped to 44/8 in the 14th over.
India were off to a dreadful start while chasing the modest target, losing Ganguly and super sub Venugopal Rao in consecutive balls. Both the wickets were scalped by express speedster Shane Bond, who was bowling with a lot of fire.
India were two wickets down, with just 11 on board!
And there was more to come. With Bond's each delivery clocking well above 145 km/h, the Indian batters looked like cats on a hot tin roof. Yet another victim succumbed to the fury of his pace. Dravid this time, bowling himself out for 5.
Yuvraj Singh came in next to replace Dravid. But he didn't trouble the scorers much. The ball took the outside edge of his bat and flew to the first slip. Fleming completed a simple catch there.
India were in deep-deep trouble now. The top four were already back in the pavilion with just 19 on board in the sixth over.
Now all hope was left to Sehwag. He was in spectacular form, stroking two clean hits to the fence and had moved to 13 in double quick time. But one small error in judgement and the the batsman spooned the ball at the point region. Marshall there was mighty glad to accept the catch.
Bond and Adams were really turning the screws on the Indian batsmen by now, uncorking some of their best bowling. Both were super-sharp and bang on target, giving absolutely no leeway to the batsmen to take them easy. Bond, with Sehwag's dismissal, had got his five wickets and was looking good for much more.
The next few overs proved to be even more disastrous as Agarkar followed Sehwag and Dhoni followed Agarkar, back to the pavilion.
New Zealand were just an inch away from victory now, as the scorecard read 44/8.
Yadav, Pathan showed some grit
However, the 'procession' was stalled there and then. J P Yadav and Irfan Pathan put on a breathtaking partnership for the 9th wicket. Both played sensibly, yet managed to garner runs at will.
With Bond and Adams out of the attack, no other bowler proved incisive enough. Yadav easily stroked his way to a half century, hitting 11 boundaries and one six. Pathan followed soon after with his half-ton with 3 fours and one six.
The momentum was swinging back in India's favour and one could see one or more Kiwi fielder dropping their shoulder.
It had been a remarkable recovery by the two batsmen and the target now was just 59 runs away.
And then. Bond was brought back into the attack by skipper Stephen Fleming and there it all ended. Bond got Pathan, while match top-scorer JP Yadav, at the other end, lost all hope and holed out to mid-off.
India finished anti-climatically for 164 - 51 runs short of the target.
New Zealand collapse
New Zealand were given an unexpected rude shock after they were shot out for just 215 runs on a flat batting track in the second league encounter against India in the Videocon Cup Tri-series.
Kiwis played a long batting line-up but even then could not last the full fifty overs. They were bowled out in just 43 overs and only McCullum stuck doggedly for his 49 as the rest of the side collapsed before him.
Their hapless batting performance was a bolt out of the blue for the side after they had a dream start to their ODI season, with overpowering win over minnows, Zimbabwe. (Continue next page...)