Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Sharma’s bowling figures of 6/51 are a new career-best
India pace bowler Ishant Sharma wreaked havoc on the New Zealand batsmen during the first day of the second Test in Wellington as steamrolled through the Black Caps’ batting line-up with six wickets.
Sharma was well supported by fellow seamer Mohammed Shami, who took four wickets, and opening batsman Shikhar Dhawan, who scored an unbeaten half-century.
India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni would have been over the moon with his decision to bowl first as New Zealand opening batsman Hamish Rutherford was caught by Murali Vijay at first slip off the bowling of Sharma for 12.
Rutherford’s opening partner, Peter Fulton, managed to make 13 runs before he was given out lbw off the bowling of Sharma.
Debutant Tom Latham became Sharma’s third victim when he was caught behind for a duck.
New Zealand skipper Brendon McCullum failed to have an impact either as he was caught by Ravindra Jadeja at mid-off off the bowling of Shami for eight runs.
All-rounder Corey Anderson amassed 24 runs before he was caught by Virat Kohli at gully off the bowling of Sharma.
Wicketkeeper BJ Watling failed to trouble the scorers as he was caught by Rohit Sharma off the bowling of Sharma.
Kane Williamson was the standout performer for New Zealand as he scored 47 runs off 100 balls, which included six boundaries, before he was caught by Rohit Sharma at second slip off the bowling of Shami.
Debutant James Neesham managed to make 33 runs before he was caught behind off the bowling of Shami.
Tim Southee smashed a quickfire 32 before he was caught by Vijay off the bowling of Sharma.
New Zealand were bowled out for a dismal 192 when Trent Boult was brilliantly caught by Cheteshwar Pujara off the bowling of Shami for just two runs.
Sharma, who registered his fifth five-wicket haul, finished with six wickets, while Shami snapped up four.
Trailing by 192, India got off to a horrible start as Vijay was caught behind off the bowling of Southee for only two runs.
Dhawan and Pujara made up for the early loss of Vijay with an 87-run partnership, during which Dhawan brought up his half-century, before Pujara was given out lbw off the bowling of Boult for 19.
Dhawan and Ishant Sharma, who was sent in as the nightwatchman, managed to accumulate an unbeaten 11-run partnership before the umpires decided to bring play to an end for the day.
Dhawan finished on 71 off 87 balls, which included 10 boundaries and a six, while Sharma remained undefeated on three.
Southee and Boult picked up one wicket each.
India ended the day on 100/2 and will continue batting tomorrow at 11:00 local time, 22:00 GMT (previous day).