The rain forced the cricketing fraternity to wait for one more day for the arrival of the inaugural World Test Championship Final 2021. On day 2, the weather looked clear and Kane Williamson won the toss and didn’t hesitate in deciding to bowl first as he named an all-pace bowling lineup featuring Trent Boult, Tim Southee, Neil Wagner and Kyle Jamieson along with Colin de Grandhomme.
Rohit Sharma and Shubhman Gill gave India a solid start and played confident shots up front. Kiwi bowlers were unable to ask many questions upfront but found their rhythm back after the drinks break. They bowled really well post the first hour and removed dangerous-looking Rohit Sharma. However, by then he shared 62 runs for the first wicket with Gill, who followed him soon as well.
Cheteshwar Pujara played in his usual way. Unmoved by everything thrown towards him and water-tight with his defence. It took him 36 balls to open his account as he scored consecutive fours off Neil Wagner. However, after playing another 15 dot balls, Pujara perished to Trent Boult’s inswinger, which thudded Pujara’s back pad.
Virat Kohli looked in control when he was batting in the middle. New Zealand bowlers were disciplined and didn’t allow free runs to Indians. Kohli gave respect to their tight line and lengths and left deliveries outside the off stump. He found a good ally in his deputy Ajinkya Rahane. Both players battled well in the middle during constant breaks posed by bad lights.
Rahane played few shots to show his intent during his unbeaten 29 runs. On the other hand, Kohli scored only a single four on day 2 for his 44 runs. Bad lights forced early stumps with India being 146/3 in 64.4 overs.
Kyle Jamieson, Wagner and Boult are Kiwi bowlers with one wicket each.
See how Twitter reacted on the first-ever day’s game of the World Test Championship Final;
— Trendulkar (@Trendulkar) June 19, 2021
Watching Virat Kohli & Ajinkya Rahane survive a spell with a Dukes ball in very English conditions from Tim Southee just makes you wish for more neutral Tests #WTCFinal
— Bharat Sundaresan (@beastieboy07) June 19, 2021
Very disappointed in Nz not playing a spinner in the #ICCWorldTestChampionship as this wicket is going to spin big with huge foot marks developing already. Remember if it seems it will spin. India make anything more than 275/300 ! The match is over unless weather comes in !
— Shane Warne (@ShaneWarne) June 19, 2021
After an unusual start, New Zealand are back to doing what they are best at. Play disciplined, steady cricket even if it can seem monotonous. Like fishermen, they will cast their line and they will wait
— Harsha Bhogle (@bhogleharsha) June 19, 2021
Congratulations to Virat on becoming the most capped Test Captain for India. Definitely a great toss to win for New Zealand. But I am sure the Indian batsman will be ready to face the challenge and we should have a fascinating encounter #WTCFinal2021 pic.twitter.com/jgxCzEAm0V
— VVS Laxman (@VVSLaxman281) June 19, 2021
— BCCI (@BCCI) June 19, 2021
— Irfan Pathan (@IrfanPathan) June 19, 2021