Aakash Chopra Feels New Zealand Will Still Be Under More Pressure Despite Tightening Its Grip
Aakash Chopra
Aakash Chopra. (Photo Source: Twitter)
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Aakash Chopra Feels New Zealand Will Still Be Under More Pressure Despite Tightening Its Grip

Aakash Chopra feels New Zealand will still be under more pressure despite tightening its grip after dismissing India for 217 in their first essay. In reply, Kiwis were 101/2 at stumps on Day 3.

New Zealand had a memorable Day 3 in the ongoing WTC final versus India at The Rose Bowl, Southampton on Sunday (June 20). As India resumed the day at their overnight score of 146-3, they were expected to take the team score beyond the 250-run mark and challenge the No. 1 ranked Black Caps.

Aakash Chopra. (Photo Source: Twitter)
Aakash Chopra. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Aakash Chopra: Similar Things Can Unfold On Day 4 As Like India Who Was 146/3, New Zealand Resumes On 101/2

However, nothing of that sort happened as India was bundled out for a below-par 217 courtesy of a five-wicket haul from Kyle Jamieson. In reply, the New Zealand openers Tom Latham and Devon Conway batted out for a long period and stitched an impressive 70-run stand to take the Kiwis to 101/2 at stumps on Day 3.

Being just 116 runs behind India’s first-innings total and having 8 wickets in hand, the Kane Williamson-led side is in the driver’s seat. However, Indian opener-turned-commentator Aakash Chopra feels the Black Caps will still be under more pressure than Virat Kohli-led India.

Kyle Jamieson, AFP
Kyle Jamieson, AFP

After the end of proceedings, Aakash Chopra told Star Sports, “They (New Zealand) also have to look at where India were. They were 146 for 3, two set batsmen but come next morning, it’s a different world altogether. The ball is moving again, you find the edges, India’s tail hasn’t wagged, the middle-order has collapsed and you haven’t reached where you wanted to reach. Similar things can unfold tomorrow as well.”

Aakash Chopra further opined, “So from a New Zealand point of view, they know they are not out of the woods at all. Keep in mind, the moment you bowl first, you have to bat last and you have to bat the opposition out. So a 30-40 run lead is insignificant. You have to take at least a 150-run lead to make a match of it, seal the advantage of bowling first.”

“Things might change, Ashwin has already got a wicket. He is getting a bit of turn. Swing is the only area where Indian bowlers are lagging behind, not the discipline nor the effort. Ishant was the only Indian bowler who was able to swing.

“Tomorrow is the day where India fast bowlers need to find a swing. If they are able to do that, the match will swing in India’s favour,” Aakash Chopra added.

From India’s perspective, Virat Kohli & Co. will be desperate to strike early in the morning session on Day 4. If they can manage to apply pressure, not give away easy runs and churn out a few quick wickets, the work done by the NZ openers will become null and void as the Kiwis will have to fight it out in order to get a sizeable lead.
Aakash Chopra said New Zealand needs a lead of around 150 runs if they are to seize advantage after having opted to bowl first in the historic one-off final at the Ageas Bowl. Aakash Chopra said New Zealand will know they are not out of the woods yet despite a dominant performance with both the bat and the ball on Sunday, considering they have to bat last in the Test.

Devon Conway And Kyle Jamieson Puts New Zealand Ahead But India Strikes Back With Ravichandran Ashwin And Ishant Sharma Getting A Wicket Apiece

64.4 overs of play was possible on Day 2 after rain washed out the entire Day 1. New Zealand asked India to bat first after winning the toss. New Zealand lost a late wicket in the form of a well set Devon Conway but it would be fair to say that Kiwi openers and Kyle Jamieson have put their team ahead of India after the end of Day 3 in the inaugural World Test Championship Final (WTC) final in Southampton on Sunday.

Ishant Sharma struck late in the final session to dismiss Devon Conway for 54 (153 balls) and a recharged Indian side would have liked one or two more but bad lights forced the umpires to end the play a bit early again. Ross Taylor managed to play through the last 2 balls of the day after Devon Conway’s departure and left the field with captain Kane Williamson (12*).

Ravichandran Ashwin Celebrates A Wicket (AP Photo)
Ravichandran Ashwin Celebrates A Wicket (AP Photo)

India had their first wicket in the 35th over. Ravichandran Ashwin, the off-spinner, got the breakthrough. Tom Latham has to depart for 30, bringing an end to a 70-run opening stand. A nice loopy one from Ravichandran Ashwin and Tom Latham went for the drive. But he failed to keep it down. Virat Kohli, at short cover, took a fine catch, timing his jump to perfection.