Kane Williamson acknowledged Indian bowlers' brave effort and stated that the hosts' opening spell snatched the game away from them in Pune yesterday. While accepting that their batsmen failed to apply themselves, the Kiwi skipper asked his players to pull up their socks in Kanpur ODI.
Bhuvneshwar Kumar, whose 3 for 45 set up the comfortable six-wicket victory for the hosts, picked the key wickets of Martin Guptill and Colin Munro with the new ball to rattle New Zealand’s top order and later bowled Henry Nicholls when the batsman was set on 42. He was brilliantly supported by his partner in crime Jasprit Bumrah who dismissed the dangerous Kane Williamson before getting the wicket of Mitchell Santner. That turned the game in India's favour and Williamson accepted that fact stating the spell put them under a lot of pressure.
"Whatever you do when you win or lose the toss you want to do well. We weren't quite good enough at the top but credit to the way India bowled," the Kiwi skipper said in the post-match presentation.
"Their opening spell was very good, it put us under a lot of pressure and hit the mark with their lengths on that surface."
The result means the third and final ODI of the series has become the decider, which will be played in Kanpur on Sunday – a situation similar to the one last year when the same two teams were tied at 2-2 after four ODIs going into the fifth and final game in Visakhapatnam. India ended up taking that series with a crushing win in the final game, but Williamson asked his players to perform much better this time to win the series.
"We certainly came here with high hopes and we put a much better performance together in Mumbai (in the first game), not so much today," he said.