India vs New Zealand 2016, 3rd ODI: Rating the Indian cricketers
After the Kiwis had hung on for a nerve-wracking victory in the previous match at the Feroz Shah Kotla, the attention shifted towards Mohali with the series reaching a crucial stage. The visitors’ misfortune at the toss continued as India yet again decided to chase.
Despite setting a solid base at the top of the order, New Zealand lost their way in the middle overs with the home team’s spinners pegging them back considerably. However, a resilient late surge from James Neesham and Matt Henry ensured that a sizeable target was set.
India’s chase got off to a rather tumultuous start with both openers falling cheaply and complicating the situation. However, the heavy dew coupled with the presence of their two most experienced batsmen offered a smooth passage to the target which in turn allowed them to take a 2-1 lead in the five-match series.
Let us take a look at how each Indian player contributed to the side’s victory in the third ODI at the PCA Stadium.
Virat Kohli – 9
The modern-day master of chases, Kohli added another century to his burgeoning second-innings collection with an unbeaten 154. His shot-selection as well as strike-rotation was particularly ruthless and proved why he stands apart from the other limited-overs batsmen across the globe.
MS Dhoni – 8.5
Coming into the match desperately needing a substantial effort to silence his detractors, Dhoni promoted himself up the order in a discernible attempt to return to form. That he did in some style by playing a blistering knock that supplemented a dexterous showing with the gloves to cap a highly productive day for both himself and his team.
Kedar Jadhav – 8
Surprisingly, the part-timer’s love affair with the ball extended to this match too as the New Zealand batsmen found a way to bolster his wickets tally. The off-spinner’s canny expertise in delivering key strikes such as Kane Williamson and Tom Latham could convince the team management of his usefulness even when the squad is at full strength.
Amit Mishra – 8
After spending most of his time by carrying drinks in the Test series, more playing opportunities with the white-ball has enabled Mishra to display his wicket-taking ability. The leg-spinner’s deliveries to dismiss Taylor and Ronchi were straight from the coaching manual – bring the batsman forward by enticing him in flight before landing the sucker punch.
Axar Patel – 7
One glance at the statistics might suggest Axar has picked up only one wicket in the series thus far, including this game. But, his utility can be measured from the stability that he has provided in the middle-overs. The left-arm spinner continued to keep things tight with another compact effort.
Jasprit Bumrah – 7
Interestingly, the 22-year old seam bowler has gone on record claiming that he usually looks to control the run rate and pick up wickets by building the pressure. Bumrah was at it again by tightening the noose from his side which helped bring wickets at the other end.
Manish Pandey – 7
With the senior duo doing the bulk of the heavy lifting, Manish was mostly required to see through the chase by supporting Kohli. The 27-year old played the role adequately to prevent any hiccups in India’s path to the target.
Umesh Yadav – 6.5
Although he picked up three wickets in the game, Yadav conceded as many as 75 runs from his full quota of overs which eroded any advantage that those wickets might have fetched for the hosts. Capable of clocking serious speeds, he could become a much more potent threat if he finds a way to control his radar.
Hardik Pandya – 5.5
Following an eventful entry into ODIs, Pandya did not have much to do apart from sending down five wicket-less overs this time around. Martin Guptill’s early blitz against him could present a few concerns regarding his propensity to make the new ball count on a consistent basis.
Rohit Sharma – 3.5
Having suffered some discomfort in the second ODI while driving on the up and nicking one behind, all eyes were on Rohit if he could conjure a significant knock. But, the Mumbaikar was trapped in front for just 13 after failing to pick up a slower delivery from Tim Southee.
Ajinkya Rahane – 3
With a few of the regular options like Shikhar Dhawan and KL Rahul injured, the series has provided a platform for Rahane at the top of the order. However, he was unable to capitalize once again courtesy another soft dismissal.