Manchester: Rain pushed the Old Trafford semi-final between India and New Zealand into its reserve day. When the players went off the field at the start of the 47th over, New Zealand had struggled to 211 for 5 on a distinctly two-paced surface.
It is also about the attitudes that the teams might take to the chase. Trent Boult, Lockie Ferguson and Mitchell Santner with nine overs each, working through longer spells can bring New Zealand back into the chase anytime with a flurry of wickets but with 20 overs, and hardly any spells to work with, it might not be the same. Crazy old game, as they say.
And here is another factor: if there is no play possible tomorrow the forecast isn t that great- India would go through because they had finished higher on the points table.
New Zealand were struggling for the most part of their innings and were 211/5 in 46.1 overs when rain interrupted proceedings. The cricket on show was utterly fascinating, though. It was cloudy but the ball wasn t swinging around much.
There was enough to keep the batsmen wary though. New Zealand, who lost their last three matches chasing, chose to bat after winning the toss.
New Zealand will face the final 3.5 overs of their innings, with Ross Taylor (67 not out) and Tom Latham (3 not out) to return to the crease.
Further showers are forecast in Manchester, though, and should the game not be completed, India will qualify for Sunday's final at Lord's because they finished above New Zealand in the group stage.
Earlier, the Black Caps won the toss and elected to bat first, but they toiled to 27-1 in the powerplay before Kane Williamson (67) at least attempted to push their innings on.
In fact Kumar thought he had a wicket with the first ball of the match. He sought a review against Martin Guptill, which proved a mistake. The upshot of that was that India had used up their review with 49.5 overs of the Kiwi innings remaining.
Given Guptill’s current form it may have been wiser to save the review for someone else. He barely middled a ball from Kumar or Bumrah before edging to Kohli at second slip.
So Williamson began his restoration act early again and he took his time alongside Henry Nicholls.
After 10 overs the Kiwis had only 27 on the board and their captain did not seem in the least worried by that – though it is hard to tell what Williamson is thinking out there. He just kept playing the ball on its merits.
The partnership was worth 68 when Nicholls was bowled by a Jadeja delivery that had eyes popping.
Despite this being a fresh pitch the ball turned surprisingly through the left-hander’s gate. Now Taylor and Williamson continued with a cagey approach. For more than 13 overs there were no boundaries, a sequence ended by a pulled drive by Williamson against Yuzvendra Chahal, who proved the most expensive bowler in Kohli’s quintet.
Williamson’s half-century took 79 balls and he was seeking acceleration when he was caught at cover off Chahal; he paused briefly and stared at the surface to suggest it had betrayed him.
Taylor hit the solitary six of the innings in between seeing Colin de Grandhomme and Jimmy Neesham come and go. From the 40-over mark onwards there was a hint of acceleration. And then the rain came.