Kohli unbeaten after hard-fought day against England in Southampton
Southampton, June 19, 2021
Virat Kohli finished the second day of the ICC World Test Championship Final unbeaten on 44 as India and New Zealand are evenly poised.
Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane put on an unbeaten stand of 58 as India battled to 146/3 when bad light forced an early end to the day, with only 64.4 overs of play possible.
After a washout on day one, New Zealand won the toss and elected to bowl, looking to make the most of the overcast conditions in Southampton.
The Indian players wore a black armband in memory of Milkha Singh, the great Indian athlete who passed away at the age of 91 on Friday.
And it was India who started stronger as Rohit Sharma and Shubman Gill combined to put on 62 for the first wicket.
Sharma looked particularly threatening, with two boundaries through the offside in Tim Southee’s fourth over of the morning.
However, Kyle Jamieson made the breakthrough with a full ball angled in. It moved away late and Sharma edged to Southee at third slip for 34.
His dismissal slowed the scoring, and he was soon joined by opening partner Gill, who feathered one through to BJ Watling off the bowling of Neil Wagner for 28.
Cheteshwar Pujara and Kohli saw India through to lunch at 69/2 but the scoring rate had dropped rapidly, and that continued into the second session.
Eventually that pressure told and Pujara fell LBW to Trent Boult for just eight, leaving India 88/3.
Rahane joined Kohli in the middle as India tried to rebuild. The pair knuckled down and got their side to 120/3 at tea, with bad light forcing the players off.
Just three more overs were possible after lunch until another enforced break, lasting half an hour.
On the return, Rahane and Kohli continued to accumulate, taking their partnership past 50 before bad light meant an early end to proceedings.
India 146/3 in 64.4 overs (Virat Kohli 44 not out, Rohit Sharma 34; Kyle Jamieson 1/14, Neil Wagner 1/28)