Navdeep Saini played the knock of his life to give India a fighting chance in the must-win second ODI against New Zealand in Auckland on Saturday.
Chasing New Zealand's 273/8, India's top order failed but Shreyas Iyer and Ravindra Jadeja turned up to play pivotal knocks, but the surprise came from Saini, the bowler.
Batting for the first time in his short ODI career, the 23-year-year from Karnal in Haryana, hit 45 off 49 balls with the help of five fours and two sixes, including successive fours off Colin de Grandhomme in the 44th over.
He was bowled by Kyle Jamieson, off the third ball of the next over, after hitting a six.
He and Jadeja resurrected the Indian innings with a 76-run stand.
Here are some fan reactions:
Wat a shot saini ðÂÂÂÂªðÂÂÂÂªðÂÂÂÂª pic.twitter.com/RXjUEspuQd— MoonwalkðÂÂÂÂÂÂ (@Moonwalk9999) February 8, 2020
Well done Saini..Good to see some resistance from lower order— manikant sharan (@SharanManikant) February 8, 2020
The way Navdeep ðÂÂÂÂÂÂ saini was playing today,so much impressed by him.The reason why I wanted him to play the first match.Absolute surprise package âÂÂ¤amazing showcase of talent by him.#indvsnz— MarilynMonroe (@Slytherin_Bell) February 8, 2020
Well played Navdeep Saini 45..ðÂÂÂÂÂÂðÂÂÂÂÂÂ— Rohan R Shanbhag (@rony619619) February 8, 2020
Navdeep Saini you couldn't make #TeamIndia win but you definitely won our heart with your amazing inning âÂÂ¤ðÂÂÂÂ¥— Archie Agarwal (@_rchie0425) February 8, 2020
Very entertaining & lovely knock.
Well played, #NavdeepSaini (45) ðÂÂÂÂÂÂðÂÂÂÂ¥
Big around of applauds for you ðÂÂÂÂÂÂðÂÂÂÂÂÂðÂÂÂÂÂÂðÂÂÂÂÂÂ#NZvsIND #NZvIND #INDvNZ pic.twitter.com/ByWuybKnVq
Navdeep Saini used to earn 200 Rs playing tennis ball matches ,then Gautam gambhir saw him to bowl in the nets of Delhi ground ,gave his all efforts to select Saini for Delhi Ranji team and now Saini showed he can make India proud both with ball and bat.#NZvIND pic.twitter.com/YY07ojgB6u— Subham (@subhsays) February 8, 2020
Earlier, India won the toss and opted to bat first.
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