New Zealand's Fielding Strategy Blunder Remains Unnoticed

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ICC Cricket World Cup 2019: New Zealand’s Fielding Strategy Blunder Remains Unnoticed 

ICC Cricket World Cup 2019: New Zealand’s Fielding Strategy Blunder Remains Unnoticed
Photo Credit: Getty Images.

In the rain-interrupted first semi-final of the 2019 ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup, New Zealand beat India by 18 runs. Despite a big early collapse at chasing, India almost snatched a victory in an incredible way. During the crucial 49th over of India’s innings, New Zealand made a vital mistake in the fielding but luckily escaped as everyone failed to notice that.

That semi-final ran for the two days (9th and 10th July) due to the rain-interruption. New Zealand won the toss in that match and scored 239/8 (50 overs) in the first innings.

In reply, India were struggling on 5/3 and 24/4 during the initial stages. Later, the middle-order batsmen fought hard, but India were battling on 92/6.

New Zealand, semi-final, CWC
New Zealand national cricket team

Later, MS Dhoni and Ravindra Jadeja played impressive cricket which helped India to fight back in that match. Dhoni and Jadeja had an incredible 116-run partnership for the seventh wicket. Jadeja scored 77 runs off 59 balls while Dhoni scored 50 runs off 72 balls.

New Zealand fielded an extra player outside the 30-yard circle

Meanwhile, New Zealand’s controversial mistake happened during the 49th over when Dhoni was batting. As the third powerplay was running at that time, a maximum of five fielders was allowable to field outside the 30-yard circle at that time. However, the field map was showing six players outside the 30-yard circle when India needed 25 runs off 10 balls.

Soon, the New Zealand pacer Lockie Ferguson delivered the next ball where MS Dhoni was run-out by Martin Guptill‘s direct hit.

As New Zealand broke the fielding rules on that delivery, the on-field umpires should call that a no-ball and also give the free-hit signal. However, Dhoni’s run-out wouldn’t be cancelled anyway. But, the Indian players and the on-field umpires totally missed noticing that big mistake.

India were finally bundled out for 221 runs in 49.3 overs as New Zealand won that match by 18 runs. With this victory, New Zealand have reached the CWC final for the second time. Their first CWC final was in the previous edition (2015) where Australia beat them in that final.

New Zealand will play the 2019 CWC final on 14th July against the winner of the second semi-final at Lord’s (London). In the meantime, Australia and England will face each other at Birmingham in the second semi-final on Thursday (11th July).

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