New Zealand defeated India by 18 runs in the first semifinal of the ICC World Cup played at the Old Trafford cricket ground at Manchester to secure a berth in the grand finale of the marquee event. Defending a 239-run total, the Kiwis bowled out India for 221 with Matt Henry picking up 3 wickets and other Kiwi bowlers collectively bowling well as a unit.
India got off to a nightmarish start losing three of their top-order batsman in quick succession. Reeling at 5 for 3 courtesy a brilliant opening spell by Matt Henry and Trent Boult, India staged a brief recovery with Rishabh Pant and Hardik Pandya but both of them played rash shots against off-spinner Mitchell Santner to throw away their wickets.
In came MS Dhoni and staged a good recovery with Ravindra Jadeja notching a century partnership. However, against the run of play, Jadeja who was looking dangerous with some lusty blows over the fence, holed one up in the air off Boult and lost his wicket.
Martin Guptill then produced a brilliant run-out to send Dhoni back to the pavilion. With the run-rate piling up it was too much of a task for the Indian tail enders to pull off the chase.
After New Zealand's innings was interrupted rain yesterday and play called off, the Black Caps resumed their innings at 211/5 and bated out their remaining 3.5 overs.
The Kiwis could get to the 239-run total on the back of half-centuries by skipper Kane Williamson and their experienced middle-order batsman Ross Taylor.
New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson won the toss and elected to bat first in what otherwise seemed to be overcast conditions on offer at Manchester on Wednesday.
The Indian pacers were relentless with their line and length in seaming conditions on offer and gave away almost nothing to the Kiwi openers in the power-plays. Bumrah eventually dealt the opening blow by sending opener Martin Guptill back to the pavilion.
Henry Nicolls and Kane Williamson then stitched a gritty partnership to get the New Zealand innings back to track but the Indian spinners continued to apply pressure and chocked the run flow in the middle overs.
Ravindra Jadeja then got into the act to dismiss Henry Nicolls with a peach of a delivery. Kane Williamson kept one end tight and kept ticking the scoreboard with the ever-dependable Ross Taylor. Both Williamson and Taylor compiled resilient half tons to pile up the runs for the Kiwis.
Chahal dented a massive blow to New Zealand by outfoxing Williamson with a regulation leg spinner to have the Kiwis three down. Pandya then dismissed the dangerous power hitter James Neesham.
Bhuvneshwar Kumar then came back into the attack and struck immediately to send Colin de Grandhomme back to the pavilion. Bhuvneshwar Kumar then polished off the Kiwis tail by dismissing wicket-keeper batsman Tom Latham (wk) and Matt Henry.
Bhuvneshwar Kumar ended up with impressive figures of 3 for 43. Meanwhile, Bumrah, Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja and Yuzvendra Chahal chipped in with one wicket each.