Dogged New Zealand salvage draw in fading light in Kanpur

Brief scorecard: India 345/10 (Shreyas Iyer 105, Shubman Gill 52, Ravindra Jadeja 50; Tim Southee 5/69, Kyle Jamieson 3/91) and 234/7 dec (Iyer 65, Wriddhiman Saha 61*; Jamieson 3/40, Southee 3/75) drew with New Zealand 296/10 (Tom Latham 95, Will Young 89; Axar Patel 5/62, Ravichandran Ashwin 3/82) and 165/9 (Latham 52, William Somerville 36; Jadeja 4/40, Ashwin 3/35)

Statistical highlights of India vs New Zealand 1st Test 2021

  • New Zealand’s last-wicket pair of debutant Rachin Ravindra and left-arm orthodox spinner Ajaz Patel resisted India’s push for a victory in the 1st Test, which ended in a draw at Green Park in Kanpur.
  • The duo batted 8.4 overs to salvage a draw for the Blackcaps as bad light forced the umpires to call off play with around 10 minutes of scheduled playing time left.
  • It was the 17th drawn Test match between India and New Zealand on Indian soil.
  • One of India’s protagonists in their push for victory, Ravichandran Ashwin picked a second-innings three-for and, in the process, became India’s third-highest wicket-taker with 419 wickets. He went past Harbhajan Singh’s tally of 417 Test scalps. Ashwin has the highest average and the best strike rate of India’s top 10 Test wicket-takers.
  • Before Ravindra and Ajaz Patel dug in for New Zealand to thwart India, Tom Latham and nightwatchman William Somerville batted through the entire first session on day five. Their 76-run partnership in 33.1 overs seemed to have brightened the visitors’ chances of saving the Test (if not give them encouragement to hunt down the target of 284), as India’s bowling quintet toiled on a typically sluggish Kanpur pitch.
  • Latham went on to get a half-century (52) in the second innings, to follow up his first-innings 95. He is the third New Zealand batsman, after Nathan Astle and Craig McMillan (both in 2003), to score half-centuries in both innings of a Test.
  • In New Zealand’s first innings, Latham shared a 151-run partnership for the first wicket with opening partner Will Young (89) as they led the Kiwi reply to India’s first-innings total of 345. Displaying tremendous temperament and application, backed by a tight defence, the duo kept the Indian bowlers at bay for as many as 66 overs. They became the first visiting opening pair, since Alastair Cook and Keaton Jennings of England on their tour of India in 2016, to record a century stand in India.
  • For India, Shreyas Iyer enjoyed a dream Test debut as he aggregated 170 runs across two innings with 105 in the first, followed by a crucial 65 in the second. He became only the third Indian batsman to register two fifty-plus scores on his Test debut after also becoming the 16th batsman from India to make a century on his maiden Test outing. He won the man-of-the-match award.
  • With regular captain Virat Kohli resting and Hanuma Vihari in South Africa with India A, a middle-order spot opened up for Iyer to make his Test debut. He became the 303rd player to play Test cricket for India, with legendary Sunil Gavaskar giving Iyer his Test cap on the first morning.
  • New Zealand too handed a debut to Ravindra, who became their 282nd Test player.
  • Captaining for the sixth time in Test cricket, Ajinkya Rahane retained his unbeaten captaincy record as he drew a Test for the second time as India captain.