Kyle Jamieson had a dream debut picking up three wickets to leave India in a hole at 122/5. The young, tall fast bowler took out key wickets of Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli and Hanuma Vihari by tea, after which play could not resume due to a strong spell of shower, forcing early stumps on Day 1 of the Wellington Test. Also Read - Out of Form Kohli Still World's Best Batsman: CAC Member Madan Lal
On an extremely windy day, Kane Williamson hit the bull’s eye when he asked India to bat under overcast skies. India found it tough to score against New Zealand pacers, especially in the second session, where they could only score 43 runs from 27 overs. Also Read - Regret My Pull Shot in Christchurch: Cheteshwar Pujara
India’s opening partnership endured another low score with Prithvi Shaw cleaned up by Tim Southee by a lovely outswinger after the batsmen had hit a couple of early boundaries. In a testing first hour, Mayank Agarwal and Pujara were made to grind under cloud cover. Both batsmen were subjected to some quality bowling from New Zealand’s seamers. After Trent Boult and Southee, Colin de Grandhomme and Jamieson continued to keep the two batsmen on their toes. Also Read - I am Fine if Team decides to Play Rishabh Pant And Win: Wriddhiman Saha on Test Series Snub
With Pujara and Agarwal’s partnership beginning to look promising, Jamieson produced a beauty. The ball pitched, moved slightly away, kissed the edge of Pujara’s bat and landed in BJ Watling’s gloves to give Jamieson his first Test wicket. His second was even more memorable as he had India captain Kohli driving away from his body to edge the ball to Ross Taylor at first slip. Although he just got a finger under the ball, he wasn’t going to drop this in his 100th Test.
With Pujara and Kohli back in quick succession, Rahane and Agarwal stuck their heads out and added 39 off 61 balls. A crisp boundary down the ground gave India their first boundary in 11 overs. Despite a few streaky fours from both batsmen, Agarwal and Rahane began looking a lot more assured and took India forward. But six overs after lunch, Agarwal played a loose shot to get dismissed. Unable to keep the ball down, a set Agarwal whipped the ball down Jamieson’s throat. Vihari started with a glorious boundary down the ground but edged behind for Jamieson’s third.
At 101/5, Rishabh Pant looked at sea initially. But he and Rahane played out the remaining 14 overs ensure no further wickets were harmed. All of Rahane’s four boundaries came before lunch but he still seems to be batting on a different surface altogether to reach 38 off 122. Pant has looked nowhere close to being comfortable but he has dug it out with a 37-ball 10. With the partnership reaching 21 off 83, Pant and Rahane would have hoped to carry on but heavy rain prevented it.
Brief Scores: India 122/5 (Ajinkya Rahane 38*; Kyle Jamieson 3-38) vs New Zealand on Day 1