OTD 2019: India won their first ODI series in New Zealand in a decade

Feb 2, 2023

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India won by a margin of 4-1 against New Zealand

A New Zealand tour had always been very difficult for the Indian team ever since they began playing international cricket. Be it the completely different playing conditions, or the long-distance travel or more practically, New Zealand being the better team than India. But the Indian team had a different story to add to this history, because on this day in 2019, India broke the jinx to win their first ODI series on New Zealand soil, in a decade.

Team India had been touring New Zealand back in 2019 for a limited overs campaign and this one was a 5-match ODI series. The Men In Blue had completely dominated over the Black Caps throughout the series and they had earned this historic feat in the 5th and final ODI of the series.

On winning the toss, stand-in skipper Rohit Sharma opted to bat first but the decision soon appeared to backfire. India lost quick wickets and before the end of the 10th over, the top order was in the dugout for a mere 18 runs. On the crease were Ambati Rayudu and Vijay Shankar. The duo slowly stitched a partnership and took their team forward.

The partnership looked stronger, however, before it could complete a 100-run stand, a mix-up between the wickets caused Shankar’s departure at a personal score of 45. Rayudu then received good support from Kedhar Jadhav and they took things forward from there.

Rayudu missed out on a well-deserved 100 and got dismissed at 90 by Matt Henry. A quick-fire cameo by Hardik Pandya (45 off 22) catapulted India’s run rate and the team managed a total score of 252 runs before getting bowled out on the second last ball of the innings.

In response, New Zealand too faced initial hiccups and lost 3 wickets quickly. But the fall of Kane Williamson (39 off 73) in the 26th over caused a batting collapse. The hosts lost wickets at regular intervals and the target kept going further away from their reach. The Kiwis were bowled out for 217 runs in the 45th over and the Indian team clinched an official series victory.

This was India’s first ODI series victory on New Zealand’s soil in a decade and only the second since 1976. Prior to this triumph, India beat the Kiwis at home in 2009 under MS Dhoni’s captaincy.

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