Manchester: Reserve day will now be used to decide the winner of the semi-final between India and New Zealand at the Old Trafford on Wednesday.
New Zealand, who were 211 for 5 in 46.1 overs when rain stopped play, will resume their innings at 10.30am and play out the remaining 23 balls. India will have the full quota of 50 overs to reach the target set by New Zealand.
If play was to begin as a 20-over contest on Tuesday, India would have needed to chase a target of 148 as per Duckworth-Lewis method. But just as covers were being removed before the final cut off, rain returned to dampen the hopes and suspend the day’s play.
As of now, the forecast for Wednesday is that rain is unlikely to affect the match at least until 2pm. However, in case of no play possible due to rain, India will go through to the final on account of finishing at a higher slot in the table after the round-robin stage.
New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson won the crucial toss and promptly elected to bat first. Indian skipper Virat Kohli said that he would have batted first if he had won the toss. New Zealand brought back Lockie Ferguson in place of Tim Southee.
Jasprit Bumrah as usual prevented the openers from putting on a big partnership by forcing New Zealand opener Martin Guptill to edge a 138 kmph delivery, which he bowled from his usual shortened run up, to Kohli at second slip. The lift that Bumrah got surprised Guptill and the ball flew fast, but Kohli did well to grab it.
This was followed by a 68-run partnership between skipper Kane Williamson and opener Henry Nicholls (28). Indian bowlers’ accuracy made it difficult for New Zealand batsmen to unleash their strokes. Ravindra Jadeja gave the breakthrough by beating Nicholls and get the ball through his bat and pad to bowl him.
Williamson batted in style and correctly as usual and reached his half-century in 79 balls, but with only four boundaries. When New Zealand score began to look healthy with Williamson and Ross Taylor putting on 65 runs in 17 overs, Yuzvendra Chahal made Williamson slash to Jadeja at point. His 95-ball knock of 67 ended with a slight lapse in concentration and the talk of New Zealand posting a 250-plus total began to fade.
New Zealand added another 28 runs for the fourth wicket before James Neesham fell in the 41st over. Neesham mistimed the shot and the ball ballooned to Dinesh Karthik at long on for 12. New Zealand needed some quick runs in the next nine overs. Though Taylor was stroking well, Bhuvneshwar struck to dismiss Colin de Grandhomme (16), caught behind by Dhoni while attempting an upper cut and top-edging the ball.
When India looked like restricting New Zealand to below 250 at the score on 211 for 5 in 46.1 overs when rain stopped play.
Taylor remained unbeaten on 67 off 85 balls with three boundaries and a six. Kohli had remarked during the prematch press conference that Taylor and Williamson are top class batsmen and they did prove their class.