Gambhir shines in India’s crushing win over New ZealandBy IANS
Saturday, December 4, 2010
VADODARA - Skipper Gautam Gambhir stroked his second successive century as India humbled New Zealand by nine wickets in the third cricket One-day International (ODI) to take an unbeatable 3-0 lead in the five-match series here Saturday.
Gambhir’s 126 not out came in just 117 balls with 16 fours and he put up an unbroken 114 run-stand with Virat Kohli (63 not out, 70b, 6×4, 2×6). The two took India to victory in 39.3 overs for the loss of opener Murali Vijay (30) while chasing the Black Caps’ total of 224 for nine in 50 overs.
For the visitors, only James Franklin (72 not out) and Nathan McCullum (43) showed the will to fight as all other batsmen fell like ninepins. Zaheer Khan (2-31), Yusuf Pathan (2-27) and Ravichandran Ashwin (2-49) wrecked the visitors’ batting.
With New Zealand reeling at 106 for seven, Franklin and McCullum added a crucial 94-run stand for the eighth wicket to take the tourists to a respectable total. Franklin hit five fours and one six in 108 balls while McCullum struck four fours in his 53-ball knock.
In reply, Gambhir and Vijay gave India a blazing start and brought up the 100-run partnership inside 15 overs. Vijay was run out by skipper Daniel Vettori while attempting to sneak an improbable single.
Vijay’s departure brought Kohli to the crease and he with Gambhir tore apart the New Zealand attack. The visitors were reduced to a hapless lot and failed to snap any Indian wicket.
Gambhir brought up his ninth ODI century in 88 balls. He scored an unbeaten 138 in Jaipur.
Kohli raised his 10th half-century and had six fours and two sixes in his 70-ball innings.