ICC WT20: New Zealand Maintain Hold Over India
New Zealand 170-7 (Taylor 41, Sharma 4-25) beat
India 161-6 (Raina 45, Jadeja 41no) by nine runs
ICC World Twenty20 warm-up, Lord's
New Zealand, the only side to beat India during the 2007 ICC World Twenty20, warmed up for the 2009 event by beating the reigning champions by nine runs in a warm-up match at Lord's.
Death hitting proved the difference between the two sides as 31 coming from the final two overs when New Zealand batted propelled them to 170 for seven but when India required 29 to win from two overs, they came up short, closing on 161 for six.
New Zealand made a poor start after being put in to bat by Mahendra Singh Dhoni, losing Jesse Ryder (2) and Martin Guptill (10) early. Brendon McCullum smacked four boundaries in a 19-ball innings of 31 before he became one of four victims of Ishant Sharma, who bowled superbly to return four for 25.
Ross Taylor put Pragyan Ojha into the stands a couple of times in an entertaining innings of 41 but the real big hitting came later when James Franklin thumped 27 not out in ten balls including two massive straight sixes and three fours while Scott Styris (29) and Nathan McCullum (18) made key contributions.
Missing Virender Sehwag, India opened with Rohit Sharma and were rewarded with a scintillating display of clean hitting that included three fours and three sixes as he carried the top order as Gautam Gambhir (14) and Mahendra SIngh Dhoni (6) both failed to get going.
When Sharma was dismissed, unluckily bowled by Vettori as the ball spun back onto his stumps through his legs after a defensive stroke, Suresh Raina (45) took over, also hitting three fours and three sixes, taking a liking to Vettori's bowling before he was caught by Ryder off Jacob Oram.
Sharma faced 20 balls and Raina 24 but the batsmen following them were unable to match their strike rates, and that cost India the game.
Yusuf Pathan fell to a superb return catch by Vettori for two and Irfan Pathan was run out for five and although Ravi Jadeja was unbeaten on 41, he faced 41 balls and New Zealand were able to close the game out with relative ease.
Vettori bowled three ,overs taking three for 24.
© Cricket World 2009