India vs New Zealand 2nd Test, Day 3: Ashwin gives India the advantage
Bangalore: 14 wickets fell on Day 3 of the second Test match between India and New Zealand courtesy Tim Southee (7/64) and Ravichandran Ashwin (5/69) as New Zealand ended the day on 232/9 with an overall lead of 244 runs.
New Zealand (2nd innings) 232/9 (Over: 69.0) | India (1st innings) 353 all out | New Zealand (1st innings) Score: 365 all out
Ravichandran Ashwin’s 5-for turned the tide in India’s favour slightly in the final session of the day after New Zealand had taken the advantage early on bundling India for 353 which was 12 runs short of the visitors first innings score of 365.
Starting the day 283/5, Kohli (103) reached his century but failed to push on as Southee's early burst with the new ball put India on the back foot. Southee picked up 4 wickets in the morning session to restrict the Indians.
New Zealand in their second innings started aggressively with McCullum clobbering couple of boundaries before lunch. In the second session Umesh Yadav got his line and length right for a brief period of time which resulted in the wicket of dangerous McCullum and Guptill. Ojha then scalped the all important wicket of Ross Taylor just before the tea break.
Ross Taylor (35), Daniel Flynn (31), James Franklin (41) and Kruger van Wyk (31) all got starts but failed to convert it to something big. The Kiwis’ middle order batted sensibly in the second session but the introduction of R Ashwin in the 19th over changed the complexion of the match.
Ashwin got the wicket of Kane Williamson in his very first over and from there on Indians started chipping away at the NZ batting order.
By the end of Day 3, India were a nose tip ahead in the evenly contested fixture at Bangalore with two more days to go.
The final session started off with New Zealand dictating the pace of the game. Daniel Flynn (31) for the first time in the series looked settled and a lead of over 250 was looking rather easy. But Ashwin accounted for Flynn who went for the cut and edged the ball to Sehwag.
Kruger van Wyk and James Franklin then put on a patient 55-run partnership to frustrate the Indian bowlers. van Wyk was roughed up by few bouncers courtesy Umesh Yadav but he gritted it out in the middle. Ashwin then took the wicket of van Wyk (31) before scalping Franklin with a top class delivery. It was a tossed up delivery, Franklin (41) was induced to step out of the crease, the ball turned away from him, resulting in simple stumping for Dhoni.
Ashwin then removed Southee and Ojha accounted for Bracewell to leave New Zealand with one wicket and a lead of 244 runs.
New Zealand lead by 135 runs with 6 wickets remaining at the end of second session on Day 3 of the 2nd Test at Bangalore.
At the start of the post lunch session, Umesh Yadav’s early burst saw him scalping the wickets of Martin Guptill (7) in the very first over after lunch and then accounted for the departure of dangerous Brendom McCullum (23). The aggression shown by the Kiwi openers fell flat there as Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor bide their time in the middle. The run-flow was stopped by some tight bowling by Zaheer Khan and Yadav who finally got his line right and reaped rewards.
Ashwin’s first over in the second innings produced the wicket of Kane Williamson (13) but Ross Taylor carried on solidly.
Daniel Flynn who joined Taylor resisted the urge of sweep and looked far more settled as compared to his previous innings. New Zealand were looking good for a decent total but the wicket of Ross Taylor by Pragyan Ojha might have turned the tide in India’s favour a little bit. Taylor literally gifted his wicket getting out trying to sweep. James Franklin (11*) and Daniel Flynn (25*) were at the crease for the visitors.
India started Day 3 on 283/5 and in the first session itself New Zealand bowled out the hosts for 353 runs in the first innings taking a slender lead of 12 runs.
Tim Southee was the wrecker-in-chief finishing with a career best figure of 7/64 in 24 overs. He picked up four wickets today including the scalps of centurion Virat Kohli and MS Dhoni.
Earlier, Virat Kohli went past his century but was the first wicket to fall when he was on 103 as soon as the Kiwis took the new ball. The new ball was available just after two overs and Ross Taylor did not hesitate to take the new ball. The results were imminent as Southee, Boult and Bracewell had Kohli and Dhoni in troubled waters. Dhoni was beaten all ends up more often than not with the moving ball.
Kohli got to his century in the 5th over of the day with a flick in front of square, but perished in the next over itself. Kohli offered no shot as the ball crashed into his pads in front of the wickets. Kohli shouldered arm to the straight delivery expecting it to move away but the ball held its line and moved in off the pitch only due to the angle. It was good bowling by Southee as he bowled it with a cross seam. All the previous balls were moving away from the right-handers but not that one.
Southee made the batsmen play and he stuck to his line and length, occasionally changing the grip of the ball and using his wrist well to get that extra rip.
Next to depart was Dhoni who looked out of sort right from the moment ball started to move. Dhoni was adjudged out LBW for 62 runs. Dhoni did not commit to the front-foot and stayed rooted to the crease. Zaheer Khan (7) started off with a huge six down the ground but he, along with Ojha (0) were send packing immediately. The pacer finished with a recording breaking spell of 24-6-64-7 with an economy of 2.66.
But Ravichandran Ashwin proved to be a tough cooking cracking a couple of handsome drives as he stitched together a vital 33-run partnership with Umesh Yadav (4) to help India reach 353 runs. After Ashwin-Yadav played out nearly 9 overs, Trent Boult send Yadav packing to finish the Indian innings. Ashwin played a good hand of 32 and remained unbeaten.
New Zealand openers came into bat for 5 overs with Brendon McCullum (21 runs off 15 balls) playing with an aggressive frame of mind along with Martin Guptill (7). New Zealand had an overall lead of 41 runs over India on the basis of the first innings score.