Southampton: After the first day of the World Test Championship final was lost to rain, the second day allowed only 64.4 overs of play before poor light ended play with India 146/3 wickets against New Zealand at the draw of stumps.
Skipper Virat Kohli was batting on 44 (124 balls) and his deputy Ajinkya Rahane on 29 (79 balls). The two have so far added 58 runs for the fourth wicket.
The match that had gone well in the first half saw interruptions in the second half. India were 120/3 when they were forced to take an early tea break due to poor visibility. There were two more breaks due to poor light post-tea.
Both Kohli and Rahane batted grittily in the face of disciplined bowling by the Kiwis who hit the right areas with the ball that got softer.
Kohli played some good shots, close to the body as the four-pronged pace attack, which also had the medium pacer Colin de Grandhomme as support, struggled to find the edge of his bat.
Earlier, openers Rohit Sharma (34 off 68 balls) and Shubman Gill (28 off 64 balls) had provided a solid start of 62 in 20 overs as New Zealand bowlers struggled for the ideal line early on.
Then Kyle Jamieson provided the breakthrough on the first ball of his sixth over, having Sharma caught at third slip.
Gill followed over four overs later, nicking one from left-armer Neil Wagner to wicketkeeper BJ Watling.
Post-lunch, Cheteshwar Pujara’s ordeal came to an end as he was adjudged leg before wicket to a Trent Boult delivery that came back in. The India No.3 made eight of 54 balls.
On Sunday, India will hope to get to at least 250 to challenge New Zealand.
Brief scores: India 146/3 in 64.4 overs (V Kohli batting 44, Ajinkya Rahane batting 29, R Sharma 34, S Gill 28, K Jamieson 1/14, N Wagner 1/28, T Boult 1/32)
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