My corner of the oval

… thoughts from a Kiwi cricket fan

That winning feeling!

on September 13, 2012

The Black Caps celebrating after beating India in the T20 “series” in India recently

I just had to enjoy this moment in a post this week, after our New Zealand Black Caps cricket team displayed great batting form, tight bowling skills as we have come to expect from this line-up, and committed fielding abilities, to beat the Indian side (albeit by 1 run!) in a 20/20 match in Chennai, India.

Taking the opportunity to bowl first and you would’ve thought the Indians were onto a winner themselves when they had the Kiwis at 2/2 after just a couple of overs!  Cue Brendon McCullum, New Zealand’s own Master Blaster (sorry Sachin!) to take the game away from India with a quick fire (is there any other way he knows how to play anyway?!) 91 runs off 55 balls, which included 3 sixes and 11 boundary fours.  I think what was more pleasing, from a New Zealand cricket fan’s point of view, however, was the fact that he, along with Kane Williamson, Ross Taylor and Jacob Oram put together batting partnerships to create a competitive final team total.  At last, our team seems to be learning what we have been asking them to do for a while 🙂

Time for India’s turn to bat and there was that annoyingly brilliant batsman again, Virat Kohli!  His 70 runs off 41 balls could’ve done the same for his team as McCullum did for ours, but the New Zealanders tight bowling, and use of the pitch conditions, as well as fiercely competitive fielding (just ask Kyle Mills!) managed to restrict the home team so that they couldn’t score the last 4 runs required off the last ball of the match in order to win the game.  From a Wellington cricket fan perspective, I was most pleased to see James Franklin being given the chance to prove that he is still the all-rounder he always has been, by stepping up when Mills was forced from the field with a nasty injury halfway through the innings, and taking 2 wickets for 26 runs off his allocated 4 overs (including bowling the final over of the match) and being key in restricting the free-flowing Indian batsmen.  The player of the match was, of course, McCullum, but Franklin could very easily have been accepting that trophy himself, his bowling was so key to the performance.

Who else is excited for the 20/20 World Cup, starting in Sri Lanka, next week now?!  🙂

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