Chandigarh: As a matter of huge relief for the visiting New Zealand side, skipper Kane Williamson regained his form in the second ODI where he smashed a brilliant ton, his eighth in one-day internationals. Williamson, who had a poor Test series as per his standards, slammed his eighth ODI ton, which came at the Feroz Shah Kotla stadium.
The century helped New Zealand reach a decent total of 242 runs. Surprisingly, the star-studded Indian batting line-up could not chase down the total and fell six-runs short. The victory at the Feroz Shah Kotla was a much-needed one for Williamson and his men, who had been defeated in all departments of the game since their arrival. The Kiwi skipper, widely regarded as one of the finest batsmen in modern-day cricket, rose to the occasion to instill some confidence back in the team.
Now that Williamson has found form, Kiwis now need two other batsmen – Martin Guptill and Ross Taylor, to step up their performances. Guptill, who has been a vital cog in the New Zealand team, has played some fine knocks over the years, especially in limited-overs cricket. A big knock is due from his willow and the Kiwi think-tank would want him to unleash a formidable knock in the third ODI.
Ross Taylor is the most experienced campaigner in the team. The 32-year-old had a forgettable Test series where he could score just 89 runs from six innings. Nothing changed for him in ODIs, where after being dismissed for a first-ball duck at Dharamsala, the right-hander scored 21 runs in the second ODI. Taylor has played some match-winning knocks for his team in the past, and it is crucial from visitors' perspective for him to find form at the earliest.
The third ODI is scheduled to be played at Punjab Cricket Association Stadium in Mohali, Chandigarh on October 23.