1st ODI India vs New Zealand on 18th Jan at Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium, Hyderabad. India gets through a scare by Bracewell to go 1-0 up in the series with a double ton by Shubman Gill.
Fans and both teams could not have asked for a better start to an exciting One Day International series between two proud cricketing nations. A thrilling match was set up by two giant batting performances, first 208 by Shubman Gill, and then chasing a mammoth total of 350, Michael Bracewell played the innings of his life, making 140, giving a real scare to the Indian players on the field. There was not much expected from the New Zealand team in the absence of Southee and Williamson, however, New Zealand was able to pull out a thriller in the end, and lost the match just by 12 runs.
India won the toss, and they decided to bat first to put up a fighting total on the board to defend. Rohit and Kohli were not able to make an impact, but other young players continued to chip in. However, the star of the show was Shubman Gill, who scored his maiden double hundred in ODIs with 208 on 149 balls. His blistering innings included 19 fours, and 9 fabulous sixes, giving India a little edge to post 349/8 in the 50 overs. Daryl Mitchell 30/2 and Santner 56/1 were the pick of the bowlers from the New Zealand side in 1st ODI India vs New Zealand.
Chasing 350 in front of a huge Indian crowd was going to be a huge challenge for the New Zealand team. They lost the plot early on by losing the first 5 wickets just for 110. Finn Allen was the only batsman who resisted with his 40 (39 balls). New Zealand lost Tom Latham in the 29h over, and the score was 131/6. It looked like the game is done and dusted for the visitors at that stage, but Michael Bracewell had some other ideas. Bracewell slowly started building a partnership with Santner and kept getting closer to the target.
The seventh wicket partnership between Bracewell and Santner added a valuable 162-run stand, giving real hope to the New Zealand team. Bracewell’s 140 (78 balls) was his stand-out performance so far in ODIs, which almost helped New Zealand to pull off a stunner. New Zealand needed 20 runs in the last over of the match, and Shardul Thakur was greeted with a six by Bracewell. However, Bracewell caught LBW in the last over, when New Zealand was still 12 runs behind. The pick of the bowlers for India was M. Siraj with 46/4, and Kuldeep Yadav 43/2. The 1st ODI India vs New Zealand exciting finish sets up a high-entertaining series with 2 more ODIs to be played on the 21st and 24th Jan respectively.