IND vs NZ: Rohit Sharma didn’t panic during Kane Williamson-Daryl Mitchell partnership, says Matthew Hayden

Matthew Hayden heaped praise on Rohit Sharma for not feeling the pressure during the first semi-final, especially when Kane Williamson and Daryl Mitchell had a dangerous partnership going.

 

In a thrilling encounter at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai, India secured a commanding victory over New Zealand in the first semi-final of the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023. The Indian team, led by Rohit Sharma, showcased a dominant performance, outclassing the Kiwis by 70 runs to march into the final with an unbeaten record.

IND vs NZ Scorecard | World Cup 2023 Points Table

The match was a high-scoring affair, with India setting a formidable total of 397/4 in their allotted 50 overs. Virat Kohli was the star of the show, achieving a personal milestone by scoring his 50th ODI century, surpassing the legendary Sachin Tendulkar for the most number of tons in ODIs. His innings, along with a rapid century from Shreyas Iyer, who scored 105 off just 70 balls, and a strong start provided by openers Rohit Sharma and Shubman Gill, set the stage for India’s massive score.

Despite losing early wickets, New Zealand remained in the hunt thanks to a remarkable partnership between Kane Williamson and Daryl Mitchell. The duo put on a significant stand of 181 runs for the third wicket, with Mitchell playing an exceptional knock, scoring his second ton of the tournament, finishing with 134 from 119 balls. Williamson supported him well with a solid 69 from 73 deliveries. Their partnership kept New Zealand’s hopes alive and brought some tension into the Indian camp as the crowd at the Wankhede went silent, fearing another semi-final exit.

However, India’s bowling attack, spearheaded by Mohammed Shami, turned the game around. Shami, who was later named the player of the match, delivered a superlative performance with the ball, taking a 7-wicket haul for 57 runs in 9.5 overs. His spell included crucial breakthroughs that dismantled the Kiwi batting lineup, ultimately restricting them to 327 all out in 48.5 overs.

Hayden praised Rohit for not panicking during the partnership between Williamson and Mitchell and not allowing the game to drift away. The Australian legend said that Rohit didn’t let his team be affected by the phase.

“He didn’t let the game drift. He didn’t panic. India went missing there for half an hour; it was a crazy 30 minutes of wonderful batting by Daryl Mitchell, supported by skipper Kane Williamson. But he didn’t let that affect the team. He pulled back his main men. There were two or three wickets back-to-back, and then the tables turned,” said Hayden.

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