India beat New Zealand by 197 runs in the first Test at Green Park in Kanpur. Cricwaves picks out some defining moments in the match.
Pujara-Vijay partnership: The partnership between Cheteshwar Pujara and Murali Vijay in the first innings was significant since it set India for a big total. It is another matter altogether that India stumbled from the position of strength that Pujara and Vijay put them in. Pujara and Vijay added 112 runs for the second wicket. Both were in complete control during their innings. Vijay making 65 from 170 and Pujara contributing 62 from 109 balls.
Jadeja’s quick cameo: Ravindra Jadeja’s unbeaten 42 from 44 in the first innings was significant in India crossing the 300-wicket mark. At one stage, India were in big trouble at 273 for 8. However, Jadeja ensured India crossed the 300-mark with some smart play, hitting seven fours and a six. He combined with last-man Umesh Yadav to take India’s score from 277 for 9 to 318.
Taylor’s first-innings dismissal: In response to India’s first innings score of 318, New Zealand were well placed to come up with a big score. They were 159 for 1 at one stage, with Kane Williamson and Tom Latham having notched up half-centuries. When Latham was dismissed at the score of 58, it was up to Ross Taylor to build on the foundation. But, he was lbw for a second-ball duck, which was a momentum changing one. New Zealand were in a spot of bother at 160 for 3 at that stage, and ended up making only 262, giving India a decent lead.
Pujara-Vijay, again: In the second innings, Pujara and Vijay again stood up for the team, and put up a century stand for the second wicket. They took the score from 52 for 1 to 185 for 2 to put the India in complete control. Both made 70s as India set New Zealand a massive target to win in the fourth innings. The partnership between Pujara and Vijay enabled the other batsmen to bat without much worry. And, it resulted in resulted in fifties for Rohit Sharma and Ravindra Jadeja.
End of Ronchi’s resistance: After New Zealand crumbled to 56 for 4 in their chase of 434, the result seemed a formality. But, Luke Ronchi and Mitchell Santner did not give up. They took the score to 158, and had they batted on for another hour, India would have been extremely worried. But, just as India began to get frustrated, Ronchi gave his wicket away. He had fought his way to 80 when he was eventually dismissed. The Ashwin-Jadeja combination this time played their parts as fielder and bowler respectively. Ronchi’s dismissal at the score of 158 enabled India to break free, and Ashwin and Mohammed Shami ran through the lower order to bowl India to a famous victory.
--By A Cricket Analyst