10-07-201910-07-2019 14:11:02 IST
2019-07-10T08:41:02.396Z10-07-2019 2019-07-10T08:40:56.611Z - - 17-07-2019
The good news is that the weather is far brighter in Old Trafford, Manchester, on the reserve day unlike the first day of India’s semi-final against New Zealand. But as the cricketing world knows, the English weather, especially in the north where Manchester is located, is not the one to put your money on. Brief spells of rain or a heavy downpour is always a threat, ready to upset the plans of the teams, organizers and the fans alike.
If the match resumes without any interruption, India will look to run through the remaining few overs before hoping to chase down the modest target with relative ease. On the face of it, the ‘Men in Blue’ may not have a mountain to climb. But, the moist pitch, which is under covers since yesterday coupled with the overcast conditions, can pose a few tricky challenges when they begin to bat.
Firstly, it’s a fresh day and the Indian team and the fans worldwide can only hope and pray for a bright, sunny weather. The Indian batsmen would be wary of the dangers of overcast conditions, which can turn out to be a huge advantage for New Zealand that boasts of a good battery of pace bowlers. Lockie Ferguson, Trent Boult and Matt Henry along with medium pacers James Neesham and deGrandhomme will be more than handy for Kane Williamson to exploit the conditions and put India on the mat.
Trent Boult is particularly going to be the biggest threat for India with his ability to swing the ball both ways and bowl tight lines. The Kiwi left-arm pacer, who destroyed the Indian top order in the warm-up game, will be very crucial in deciding the fate of the match.
The other important aspect that both the teams will be closely following is the Duckworth Lewis rule. The method, which is more loathed than loved for throwing up improbable revised targets in truncated matches, will also come into play if the rain-ruin repeats on Wednesday. In fact, the fear of the dreaded rule was clearly palpable in New Zealand’s batting approach on Tuesday. New Zealand preferred safeguarding their wickets even at the risk of registering World Cup’s lowest score in the first powerplay.
With the D/L rule, they were aware that losing more wickets could only make it easy for the opponents batting second. And because of their caution, India may well have to deal with a steeper revised target to chase, in the event of a rain interruption. In a nutshell, more overs to bat the better and fewer overs will mean a stiffer target. And no wonder why the fans have been chanting at the ground, ‘RAIN, RAIN, GO AWAY’..!
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