India produced another scintillating effort with the ball in the first semifinal of the ICC World Cup 2019 against New Zealand at the Old Trafford in Manchester. They restricted the Kiwis to 211 for five in 46.1 overs before rain stopped the play. While ICC has kept a reserve day for the semifinals and final, these spell of showers can actually benefit India to progress to the finals.
Jasprit Bumrah and Bhuvneshwar Kumar were right on the money with the new ball. They bowled three maidens in the first five overs and removed Martin Guptill to sneak ahead in the game. Skipper Kane Williamson started to rebuild the innings with Henry Nicholls, but the boundaries were hard to come by. They managed to post 27 runs in ten overs before beginning to find the boundaries. But soon after reaching the 50-run mark, Ravindra Jadeja bowled a brilliant delivery to remove Nicholls and give India a breakthrough.
Ross Taylor and Williamson took on the job, but Indian bowlers used the wicket on offer to keep down the run-rate. The Kiwi skipper in an attempt to score quick runs perished while playing an inside out, giving a simple catch to the point fielder. Ross Taylor finally got going and brought his half-century before rain played a spoilsport in Manchester.
The drizzle got heavier, and after a significant delay, the overs have started to reduce. One over will be reduced for every four minutes. In case, New Zealand doesn’t bat again, India’s target will be 237 runs in 46 overs while it will come down to 237 and 223 in 40 and 35 overs respectively. The match officials will be keen to get going and finish the game today itself even if a match of 20 overs is possible. The Men in Blues will have to chase 148 runs if the game reduces to 20 overs.
On the other hand, if no more play is possible today, the match will resume exactly from this stage tomorrow. But the weather looks gloomier in Manchester on July 10 as well. If not more play is possible in this match, India will progress through to the finals for finish above New Zealand at the ends of group stages.