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Ind v NZ 1st test :  New Zealand last wicket pair thwarts India’s winning bid in  tense finish 

India was on the brink of winning the Kanpur Test on the back of top class bowling by Ashwin and Jadeja , but Indian-origin Rachin Ravindra (91 balls, 18 not out) took the Kiwis out of jail in the company of last man Ajaz Patel .   Ajaz (2 not out) played 23 balls with him and played a key role in snatching a draw from India’s jaws.  World champion New Zealand was given a target of 284 runs.  The second Test of the series will be played at the Wankhede Stadium from December 3. 

 On a pitch meant to be for spinners, the Kiwi team started the 5th day strong and didnt lose a single wicket before lunch , but as the game progressed  after lunch , the Indian bowlers took wickets and put tremendous pressure on the guests.  However, Rachin Ravindra took the lead with Ajaz spoiling the hard work of the Indian bowlers.  New Zealand had scored 165 for 9 in 98 overs when the match was declared a draw.

all images credits ICC

 Apart from Ashwin and Jadeja, Axar Patel and Umesh Yadav took one wicket each, while Tom Latham scored 52 runs for New Zealand.  Apart from him, nightwatchman William Somerville scored a highly impressive 36 and captain Kane Williamson scored 24 runs with defensive batting .   Apart from these, no batsman could stand against the Indian bowlers except Rachin at the end . 

 In the first session, Will Somerville and Tom Latham did not allow any success for the Indian bowlers, but the second session was dominated by the Indian bowlers who took three wickets.  Just after lunch, Umesh Yadav dismissed Somerville with a short ball, who made 36 off 110 balls.  Shubman Gill took his catch at long leg boundary.  Williamson started confidently in this  innings as he hit Ishant Sharma for a four.

 Ishant’s form was disappointing again.  Ross Taylor was dismissed by Ravindra Jadeja before tea ,out lbw .  Tom Latham (52 ​​off 146 balls) scored another half-century but was dismissed by Ashwin , playing on to the stumps .  With this Ashwin took 418 wickets, who overtook Harbhajan.  Harbhajan has 417 wickets in 103 Tests.  Ashwin has now become the third Indian in terms of taking most wickets in Tests.  

In the morning the Indian bowlers did not get any help from the pitch.  Latham missed a ball from Jadeja with struck his pads .  India took DRS on the ball going outside the off-stump but it was clear from the review that the ball was not hitting the wicket.  Ishant Sharma and Umesh Yadav also could not bowl like Tim Southee and Kyle Jamieson on this pitch.  India looked to be getting a grip  on the match as Axar Patel had  Henry Nicholls lbw , while skipper Kane Williamson was sent to the pavilion by Ravindra Jadeja.  After this, clean bowling Tom Blundell, Ashwin turned the match towards India.  India’s victory was almost certain, but Ravindra and Ajaz,  were rock solid  and dashed the host’s plans.  New Zealand’s ninth wicket fell for 155 in the 90th over and even then eight overs were left to be played.  Indian captain Ajinkya Rahane also put in a very aggressive field but Ravindra (18) played 91 balls and Aijaz (2) played 23 balls to push the match towards a draw.  India needed six wickets in the last session but could not get one wicket in the end and victory slipped out of hand.

India 345 (Iyer 105, Gill 52, Jadeja 50, Southee 5-69, Jamieson 3-91) and 234 for 7 dec (Iyer 65, Saha 61, Jamieson 3-40, Southee 3-75) drew with New Zealand 296 (Latham 95, Young 89, Axar 5-62, Ashwin 3-82) and 165 for 9 (Latham 52, Jadeja 4-40, Ashwin 3-35)

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