India tighten their grip over the final Test
by CricketArchive Staff Reporter

Scorecard:New Zealand v India
Player:RS Dravid, Harbhajan Singh, LRPL Taylor
Event:India in New Zealand 2008/09

DateLine: 6th April 2009


New Zealand were 167/4 in their second innings, in pursuit of 617, when bad light forced early stumps on the fourth day of the third and final Test against India at Basin Reserve in Wellington on Monday. The Kiwis still needed 450 more runs to win with Ross Taylor (69) and James Franklin (26) at the crease. Indian skipper Dhoni declared the Indian second innings at 434/7 giving New Zealand a mammoth victory target of 617 runs. The day's play started captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Yuvraj resuming the Indian second innings at 349/5.


Dhoni reached his 16th half-century with the help of 7 fours after Chris Martin dismissed Yuvraj Singh and Harbhajan Singh in one over to reduce India to 397/7. The twin breakthroughs came when Harbhajan (0) top edged a rising delivery to fine leg where Tim Southee dived forward to take a fumbling catch. Three deliveries earlier, Martin pitched a delivery up drawing Yuvraj into the shot who edged it without moving his feet, to first slip for Ross Taylor to take the catch. Yuvraj hit a six and 6 fours in his 40-run knock that came off 46 balls. The six and three of those fours came off successive deliveries in an over by Iain O'Brien. Dhoni remained not-out with 8 fours to his credit in his 56-run knock.


Shortly before lunch during the New Zealand innings, Rahul Dravid broke the record of Mark Waugh for most catches in Test cricket when he took his 182nd catch to dismiss Tim McIntosh to put New Zealand at 30/1. Dravid became the world record holder of most catches when he dived to his left at third slip to take a leading edge by McIntosh (4) off Zaheer Khan. Zaheer took his second wicket when Flynn (10) edged the delivery onto his pads and then onto the stumps to reduce New Zealand to 54/2. Before tea, Harbhajan Singh dismissed Martin Guptill and Jesse Ryder in one over to reduce New Zealand to 84/4.


Harbhajan trapped Guptill plumb in front of the wicket by a delivery that turned back in. Guptill, who hit 4 fours and 2 sixes in his 49-run knock, was on the backfoot when the delivery hit his pads. Two deliveries later Harbhajan took his second wicket when Ryder (0) edged a quick off-break to first slip for Rahul Dravid to take the catch. At tea, New Zealand were struggling at 136/4, scoring 99 runs with the loss of 3 wickets in the second session.


Post-tea Taylor opened up and got to his half-century which was studded with nine boundaries. James Franklin gave him company as they added an unbeaten 83 runs for the fifth wicket when the light deteriorated. The umpires after conferring each other offered light to the batsmen who promptly accepted it and stumps were called with 21 overs remaining.


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