Kumar stars as India hold New Zealand in World Cup semi

Wednesday July 10 2019

kumar

India's Bhuvneshwar Kumar looks on after a delivery during the 2019 Cricket World Cup first semi-final between India and New Zealand at Old Trafford in Manchester on July 9, 2019. PHOTO | PAUL ELLIS |  AFP 

By AFP

MANCHESTER,

Bhuvneshwar Kumar returned to take two more wickets as India held New Zealand to a total of 239-8 in the rain-interrupted World Cup semi-final at Old Trafford on Wednesday.

New Zealand, who resumed on 211-5 off 46.1 overs after rain saw play abandoned for the day on Tuesday, could only manage a further 28 runs for the loss of three more wickets during the 23 balls that remained in their innings.

Ross Taylor, 67 not out overnight, top-scored with 74.

But he had only added seven further runs when he was run out by Ravindra Jadeja's direct hit from square leg to end a 90-ball innings featuring just three fours and a six.

The very next ball saw New Zealand lose another wicket to be 225-7 when a backpedalling and leaping Jadeja brilliantly caught Tom Latham (10) off Kumar at deep midwicket.

Matt Henry (one) then holed out to India captain Virat Kohli at long-on off Kumar in the 49th over.

Kumar finished with 3-43 from his 10 overs and fellow paceman Jasprit Bumrah an economical 1-39.

Left-arm spinner Jadeja had already impressed on Tuesday by taking a miserly 1-34 in his full 10 overs

The hope for New Zealand, runners-up at the 2015 edition, was their attack would be able to take early wickets and so defend a seemingly modest total.

New Zealand captain Kane Williamson had once again anchored his side's innings with a painstaking 67 on Tuesday after winning the toss on what former England opening batsman Graeme Fowler, who played at Old Trafford for Lancashire, condemned as an "awful wicket".

New Zealand were looking to put a run of three straight group-stage defeats by Pakistan, Australia and England behind them.

But opener Martin Guptill fell for just one -- his fifth single figure score of this tournament - when he fended at a rising Bumrah ball and was caught by Kohli at second slip.

New Zealand struggled from then on, going more than 13 overs without a boundary.

Williamson had made a match-winning hundred against the West Indies in New Zealand's only previous tournament fixture at Old Trafford.

But there was no repeat on Tuesday, the skipper slicing a drive off Yuzvendra Chahal's leg-spin to Jadeja at backward point to leave his side 134-3.

If more bad weather means the minimum 20 overs in the second innings needed to achieve a result under the Duckworth-Lewis method for rain-affected matches cannot take place Wednesday, India will qualify for the final by virtue of finishing first in the initial 10-team group stage to New Zealand's fourth.

In Sunday's final, India or New Zealand will face the winners of Thursday's match between hosts England and champions Australia at Edgbaston.

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