WTC: Indian openers thwart Kiwi plans

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After the washout on Day 1, the second day of the World Test Championship final was marred by bad light, putting an end to a gripping day of cricket between India and New Zealand.

Social media was flooded with posts of upset cricket fans who have waited a long time to see this contest.

When play was stopped, India were at 146/3 at Southampton’s Rose Bowl Cricket Ground.

NZ pull back just before lunch

Rohit Sharma (34) and Shubman Gill (24) gave India the perfect start to the game.

They put up a 62-run stand scoring at a brisk pace in just 20 overs.

It was a vital partnership, considering the weather conditions and had they continued, India might have found themselves in a strong position.

However, the tide changed in the 21st over.

At first, it was Rohit who fell at 62/1 to Kyle Jamieson and Gill followed his senior back to the hut to make it 63-2 in the 25th over.

Kiwi bowlers thus made up for a bad start by claiming wickets of the two set Indian batsmen.

Kohli shines as usual

India captain Virat Kohli fought beautifully for his 44 unbeaten on Day 2.

The right-handed star took a while to get going, but then opened his account with a show-stopping cover drive on the front foot.

His patient knock made it look so easy to bat on a pitch that kept testing the batsmen.

He played the ball, under his eyes and did not seem uneasy for a moment despite the Kiwi pace cartel throwing bombs at him.

Being the backbone of the Indian batting, Kohli will have to stand tall for a bit more on the pitch to propel India to a big total in the first inning.

He was in total control for the 124 balls he faced on the second day.

Moreover, he has become India’s most Test-capped captain (61*) by dethroning MS Dhoni (60) in the WTC final.

Pujara keeps it snail-paced

Cheteshwar Pujara is known for batting slower than his Indian colleagues and it seemed like he wanted to remind everyone of this today.

The 33-year-old took a staggering 36 balls to get off the mark.

Nonetheless, the red-ball expert made the NZ bowlers work hard for his wicket.

After an outrageous display of nerves and grit, Pujara fell for 8 after playing 54 balls that included a mind-boggling 56 dot balls..

Wagner, Jamieson stand tall

Neil Wagner’s selection for the England game was dubious since his forte of short-of-length deliveries is something that normally won’t bear fruit on tracks such as the Rose Bowl.

Nonetheless, the left-arm pacer bowled beautifully, but this time taking advantage of the late swing.

Neil Wagner’s peach of a delivery forced Shubman Gill to play on the offside, only to send it to WJ Watling’s gloves.

Let’s move on to the Kiwi youngster who has been making waves across the world with his sheer brilliant all-round performances.

Kyle Jamieson got the better of his much senior Indian opponent, Rohit Sharma.

The veteran opener was forced to play a ball pitched just outside the off-stump, edging it to Tim Southee in the third slip.

India 146 for 3 (44*, Jamieson 1-14) vs New Zealand