Gambhir Century Powers India To Victory

Gambhir Century Powers India To Victory
Gambhir Century Powers India To Victory
©REUTERS/Adnan Abidi (INDIA - Tags: SPORT CRICKET) Picture Supplied by Action Images

India 259-2 (Gambhir 138no) beat
New Zealand 258-8 (Guptill 70) by eight wickets
Second One-Day International, Jaipur

Indian captain Gautam Gambhir led his side to an emphatic eight-wicket victory over New Zealand in the second One-Day International with a fluent unbeaten century in Jaipur.

Half-centuries from Martin Guptill and Scott Styris boosted New Zealand as they posted a score of 258 for eight before Gambhir's 138 saw India power home with seven overs to spare.

Guptill made 70 and Styris 59 as the Black Caps recovered from a mid-innings slump, inspired by quick bowler Shanthakumaran Sreesanth's figures of four for 47.

Styris added 58 with Daniel Vettori (31) before Sreesanth removed both in successive deliveries when Styris top-edged to wicket-keeper Wriddhaman Saha and Vettori was bowled around his legs.

Guptill weathered the early storm to post 70 in 111 balls as wickets fell at the other end, Sreesanth striking early to have Jamie How caught by Saha for five and Munaf Patel producing a fine delivery to bowl Kane Williamson for 29.

Ross Taylor made 15 before holing out to Virat Kohli off the bowling of Yusuf Pathan before Styris and Vettori revived their side's innings with a vital partnership.

Styris thumped five fours and six, facing just 56 balls while India finished things quickly with Sreesanth completing a four-wicket haul by bowling Kyle Mills for 13.

India then made a solid start to their reply, Gambhir dominating an opening stand of 87 with Murali Vijay, who made 33 in 58 balls before allowing frustration at not getting Vettori away to get the better of him as he was bowled attempting to hammer the left-arm spinner over midwicket.

Gambhir's progress was unchecked, however, and he helped himself against some ordinary New Zealand bowling, hitting 18 fours on the way to his eighth ODI century, cashing in on wide, short deliveries to keep India well ahead of the required run rate and pile the pressure on New Zealand.

He added 116 for the second wicket Virat Kohli, who stroked a fluent 64 in 73 balls before a full-blooded pull shot off Andy McKay was gathered at the second attempt by Taylor at short midwicket.

Yuvraj Singh then muscled a six and a four on his way to an unbeaten 16 in 11 balls as he and Gambhir wasted little time in putting India 2-0 up in the series with three matches to play.

Gambhir, who is captaining the side as Mahendra Singh Dhoni takes a rest, faced 116 balls.

India won the opening match of five in Guwahati by 40 runs and the third match, in Vadodara on 4th December.

© Cricket World 2010