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New Zealand hand toothless India 1st series whitewash in 8 years

Written by Mohan Fonseka

Virat Kohli’s Team India have been handed a reality check after New Zealand halted their dream run in the ongoing cycle of World Test Championship by thrashing the Asian giants 2-0 at home.

New Zealand completed a 7-wicket win, gunning down a 132-run total with ease on Day 3 of the 2nd and final Test at the Hagley Oval in Christchurch on Monday. India went down crashing from 90 for 6 to 124-all out as they lasted just 10 overs after which Tom Latham and Tom Blundell fended off the Indian pace threat and completed the formalities.

Jasprit Bumrah and Umesh Yadav struck but the wickets of Tom Latham (52), Tom Blundell (55) and Kane Williamson (5) came a bit too late as New Zealand completed a dominant win in one of their favourite hunting grounds.

After failing to trouble the scorers much in the series, Virat Kohli even rolled his arm over when things were beyond repair for India on Monday.

Chasing a paltry 132-run-target, New Zealand openers Tom Latham (52) and Tom Blundell (55) made light work of the chase to guide the side to an easy win over the hapless visitors. The two also registered the highest opening-stand at Hagley Oval, Christchurch in the fourth innings. The defeat not only became India’s second on the trot in terms of wickets, but they also lost vital points in the ICC Test Championship points table. While India continue to hold the numero uno position, with the next assignment in whites coming at the end of the year in Australia, New Zealand made giant strides to occupy the third spot with a total of 180 points up their sleeves.

Despite 3 batsmen — Prithvi Shaw, Cheteshwar Pujara and Hanuma Vihari — making fifties, India were bundled out for 242 in the 1st innings. While India managed just 48 runs for their last 5 wickets, New Zealand added 82 after being reduced to 153 for 7.

India still managed to seal a 7-run lead but their batsmen undid the good effort of their bowlers in the 1st innings.

India lost 6 wickets for just 90 runs in the final session on Sunday and their tail was wrapped up in just 10 overs on Monday morning. India managed just 124 on the board in the 2nd innings, squandering a glimmer of hope to square the series.

Let down by their batting, India lost the series 0-2 in less than 7 days over the 2 Tests. Only once did India manage to go past 200 runs in the series drubbing that should pile up pressure on the team management.

Captain Virat Kohli managed just 38 runs in 4 innings in New Zealand. Vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane managed 91 runs. Cheteshwar Pujara 100 runs. That sums up the story of India’s horror run Down Under.

About the author

Mohan Fonseka