The sun was bright on 10th July at Emirates Old Trafford, Manchester groud, with no traces of rain. It was an all-new day, a fresh start. New Zealand summed up their total top 239 runs in 50 overs.
Team India had a comfortable target of 240 runs. With big names and inform batting lineup it didn’t seemed an out of the box task. Indian fans were already celebrating the victory until te hell broke down.
It was just the second over, 9 balls to be specific and India’s star batsman “Hitman” Rohit has gone for 1 run. Indian fans were heartbroken, they had come to see another century from his bat. But everyone was confident, King Kohli was there to lead India to another victory. What happened next was unimaginable. Virat was declared LBW by the umpire. He could not believe, neither the fans could.
Captain Kohli decided to challenge the decision to the third umpire. The review showed that the ball was slightly hitting the wickets. The Third umpire had to go with the on-field umpire. The Indian captain was declared out. He was a bit unfortunate at the moment but nothing he could do. He had to depart on 1 run.
Before anyone could understand what was happing, K L Rahul attempted an unnecessary short and handed an easy catch to the wicket-keeper. This moment broke the heart of millions. India’s scorecard now read 5-3 in 3.1 overs.
On the crease were Dinesh Kartik and young Rishabh Pant. Both the batsmen were quite alert and seemed focused on building the partnership. Kartik was struggling with the pace and swing. New Zealand captain- Kane Williamson, deployed an aggressive field setup for Dinesh Kartik with 3 slips and a point. Kartik pushed the ball toward the point and James Neesham took a brilliant single-handed catch to depart Kartik back to the pavilion.
India had lost its fouth wicket on 24 runs. Rishabh Pant and Hardik Pandya tried to set a partnership before Pant was Caught by de Grandhomme. Pandya could also not hold for too long and was out on 32 runs.
The next to come was Ravindra Jadeja. Dhoni was on the crease. Pin drop silence in the stadium. Indian fans had no clue what was going to happen. Dhoni was facing criticism for his slow batting in these world cup and Ravindra Jadeja is not considered as “the mainstream batsman” by few. Jadeja too didn’t have a series of records in his name. Fans were praying, without losing the hopes.
As they say, no one can predict the future. Jadeja came in and everything seemed so changed. India was getting closer to the target, steadily and slowly. Hopes were getting high. Jadeja and Dhoni built the partnership of 108 runs. Jadeja was smashing the balls across the border. It was Ravindra Jadeja playing the biggest match of his career, creating the history, answering every single finger pointed to him. The crowd was cheering every single run taken. India had to make 32 more of 19 deliveries to make it to the finals of World Cup 2019. The match looked like slipping through the grip of New Zealand. Jadeja and Dhoni had pulled it so far and Indian Team and fans could see the victory coming to their way.
But it was not yet over, fortune had to take another turn. Ravindra Jadeja directed the ball up in the sky and Kane Williamson was quick enough to grab the cath. Jadeja had gone after smashing 77 runs off 59 deliveries. It was a crucial moment in the match, a big breakthrough for New Zealand.
But hopes were still alive. Dhoni was still there on the crease. Bhuvneshwar Kumar was next to join him. India now needed 31 for 12 balls. Dhoni smashed a six on the first ball of 48th over. The next delivery was a dot ball. The target was now 25 off 10 balls. Dhoni pushed the ball towards the leg side and got run out in an attempt to take two runs. Martin Guptill’s direct throw was accurate enough to run out the best runner of Team India. This throw destroyed the dream of billions of Indian fans bringing them to tears. On crease were Bhuvneshwar and Chahal. Team India was then bowled out at 221 runs in 49.3 overs.
Team India may be out of the World Cup 2019, but the team received an appreciation from every fan. Twitter was flooded with the thank you message for team India buy their fans, including the Prime Minister of India and other political leaders. Bollywood was also no behind in expressing its support.
A disappointing result, but good to see #TeamIndia’s fighting spirit till the very end.
India batted, bowled, fielded well throughout the tournament, of which we are very proud.
Wins and losses are a part of life. Best wishes to the team for their future endeavours. #INDvsNZ
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) July 10, 2019
Team India played a wonderful game of Cricket during the #CWC19 in England.
The Indian team may have lost the match today but with their cricketing skills they have won the hearts everywhere. #INDvNZL
— Rajnath Singh (@rajnathsingh) July 10, 2019
We win some, we lose some, but it’s all about the sport & the spirit of the game that unites us all! Well played #TeamIndia!!@BCCI #WorldCupSemiFinal @cricketworldcup @ICC #IndvsNZ pic.twitter.com/WMpVxJVGNO
— Anil Kapoor (@AnilKapoor) July 10, 2019
— Aamir Khan (@aamir_khan) July 10, 2019
Indian players twitted an emotional message thanking the fans after the match.
Firstly I want to thank all our fans who came in huge numbers to support the team. You made it a memorable tournament for all of us & we definitely felt the love showered upon the team. We are all disappointed & share the same emotions as you. We gave everything we had.Jai hind🇮🇳 pic.twitter.com/rFwxiUdqK5
— Virat Kohli (@imVkohli) July 10, 2019
A big thank you to all my team members, our coaches, support staff, our families and most importantly to all the undying support from all of you! We gave it everything we had! 🇮🇳 pic.twitter.com/nXp9GmWhIK
— Jasprit Bumrah (@Jaspritbumrah93) July 11, 2019