Seasoned Indian spinner Ravichandran Ashwin once again unveiled his humorous side on Monday after New Zealand’s Devon Conway played a sensational 99 runs knock against Australia in the first T20I at the Hagley Oval, Christchurch.
New Zealand were reduced to 19/3 before Conway displayed a spectacular performance with the bat by scoring an unbeaten 99 runs off 59 balls & guided the Black Caps to 185/5 from 20 overs. The 29 year old went unsold in the IPL 2021 auction last week even though he had set a base price of Rs 50 Lakh & Ashwin was quick to point out the funny side after the batsman played a brilliant knock.
“Devon Conway is just 4 days late, but what a knock,” Ashwin tweeted. Sent in to bat first New Zealand suffered an early shock as Australia’s Daniel Sams removed Opener batsman Martin Guptill for a duck off the third ball of the match. Guptill’s poor from wasn’t enough for the hosts when the leading wicket taker Jhye Richardson in the 10th season of the Big Bash League removed Tim Seifert in the third over to pile further misery on the host.
Captain Kane Willamson also got bowled in the next over as New Zealand lost three wickets even before the completion of the Power-play. Conway then along with Glenn Philips together put the New Zealand’s back on track. The duo together added 74 runs for the fourth wicket down before Marcus Stoinis broke the partnership. Stoinis dismissed Philips in the 13th over to reduce New Zealand to 93/4Q1. Conway continued his good form & completed his half century in just 36 balls.
With seven overs left, Conway & Jimm Neesham to score how much runs they can in Australia’s bowling. The duo together scored 34 runs in next three overs. A fine partnership between the two was broken by Richardson in the 17th over as he successfully dismissed Jimmy Neesham but there was no stopping for Conway who continued his on-slaught to guide New Zealand to 184/5 in 20 overs.
Carrying the momentum ahead, visitor’s bowlers ripped through host’s top order reducing then to 19/4 inside the Power-play. Trent Boult and Tim Southee shared two wickets apiece in their opening spell as Australia were left struggling. Leg Spinner Ish Sodhi scalped four wickets after the field restrictions as New Zealand won the match by 53 runs to take a 1-0 lead in the five-match T20I series.