As Team India took on New Zealand in the second ODI of the three-match ODI series, the visitors looked determined to make a strong comeback to level the series after having lost the first match. However, the match seemed almost like a replica of the 2019 ICC World Cup semi-final where the same teams had locked horns and had the same fate. After setting a total of 274 for the Indians to chase, the New Zealand guns came blazing as they pocketed some early wickets.
India's new number four Shreyas Iyer showed his team a beacon of hope as he steadied the Indian innings and notched up a brilliant half-century but lapsed on the very next delivery. It was then Ravindra Jadeja, yet again, who took the onus on him to take his team home. In the World Cup semi-final, it was the former skipper MS Dhoni who held the fort from the other end partnering Jaddu, but here, it was a young speedster, Navdeep Saini, filling in Dhoni's shoes.
The Blackcaps for a moment suffered another heartbreak as the duo seemed to take the match away from them with some brilliant strokes. Saini fell after hitting a brilliant six over covers, and Jadeja just like in the semi-final went on to score a fifty. However, it was run-out that broke hearts in both the matches and resulting in India's loss eventually, making the match an almost replica. In the semi-final, it was Dhoni's run out Guptil and on Saturday, it was Yuzvendra Chahal's run-out by Neesham that reignited the memories. Netizens quickly echoed Dhoni as they witnessed India suffer defeat. Here are some of the reactions:
Did he do a Dhoni? I missed the game.— Ankit Choudhary (@ChoudharySpeaks) February 8, 2020
Skipper Virat Kohli after the loss hailed the efforts of Ravindra Jadeja and Navdeep Saini. He said, "We were in trouble with the bat, but Saini and Jadeja played really well, as did Shreyas. ODIs aren't too relevant this year compared to Tests and T20s, but to find people who can play that way under pressure is a big revelation for us and a big plus. We could consider changes in the final game since we have nothing to lose now. We'll play expressive cricket and not worry too much about the result."