Cricket Classics

India v New Zealand, Game 9, TVS Cup 2003/04

Thursday, July 24, 2021
© Cricket Nirvana


  • New Zealand squared the two-Test series that was held prior to the TVS Cup.
  • It was a must-win situation for both teams with Australia already through to the final. In the previous two encounters in the series, New Zealand had won once and the other was washed out. Hence, New Zealand started as favourites.
  • Harbhajan Singh was ruled out of the crucial contest due to injury
  • Chris Cairns was New Zealand's captain due to Fleming's injury
  • The Kiwis entered the TVS Cup triangular series high on confidence after managing to draw the two Tests against the formidable Indians prior to the start of the TVS Cup triangular series that also involved Australia.

    India were scheduled to leave on their tour of Australia in a month whereas the Stephen Fleming-led New Zealand team were keen on putting on show a good display in the hot and humid conditions in India. They were schedule to tour Pakistan immediately after the tri-nation series.

    The last game of the series featured a clash between India and New Zealand with the winner guaranteed a berth in the final against the Aussies. Prior to the virtual quarter final clash, the teams had clashed twice in the tourney – one was a washout whereas the other was won comfortably by the Kiwis. So there was all to play for the two teams….

    © AFP
    Tendulkar plundered his way to his 36th ton
    Sourav Ganguly won the toss and had no hesitation in electing to bat first on a placid pitch. The sight of Virender Sehwag and Sachin Tendulkar walking out to the middle must have left the Kiwi bowlers trembling with fear.

    Nothing about the first ten overs of the Indian innings hinted at the overabundance of runs that was to follow, as Daryl Tuffey and Kyle Mills bowled good first spells and kept the openers down to 48 runs – a reasonable effort while bowling against Tendulkar and Sehwag on a placid track.

    However, once the two batsmen changed gear, they appeared totally at a loss for ways in which to stem the flow of runs. The duo brought up the 100-run partnership in 16.1 overs and got into a mode of brutality.

    Both batsmen got to their hundreds until Tendulkar fell victim to Chris Harris in the 31st over but the damage had already been done. Ganguly (33 runs, 55 balls, 5x4, 3x6) added a further 74 runs for the second-wicket to ensure the high run-rate was sustained.

    © AFP
    Zaheer Khan provided India with the crucial early breakthroughs
    Rahul Dravid scored the fastest half-century of his career – 50 runs from just 22 balls – a knock that included five boundaries and three sixes. Sehwag finished with 130 – which remains his highest individual score in ODIs. India finished with a mammoth total of 353/5, leaving the Kiwis with way too much do in this crunch tie.

    The new-ball duo of Zaheer Khan (3/30) and Ajit Agarkar (2/28) dispatched the Kiwi top-order swiftly, leaving them in tatters at 48/3 with the dangerous Lou Vincent back in the hut. The experienced duo of Scott Styris and Craig McMillan got together to try and resurrect the New Zealand innings. Remember, Chris Cairns was the stand-in captain due to regular captain Stephen Fleming’s injury.

    Styris’s 49-ball knock of 54 runs set the tone for the visitors’ recovery but it was too little too late for them. The spin bowling duo of Anil Kumble (2/36) and Murali Kartik (2/38) rattled their hopes, spinning India to a famous victory and ensuring a berth in the final.


  • Tendulkar brought up his 36th century in ODIs
  • Sehwag registered his highest individual score in ODIs (130). It still remains his highest.
  • Dravid brought up the fastest fifty of his ODI career – in just 22 balls.
  • Sehwag brought up his 4th century against New Zealand in as many as 13 games against the Black Caps at the time.
  • The last time India and New Zealand square off in an ODI at Hyderabad, Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid scored centuries and guided India to a massive 373.
  • A young Brendon McCullum came out to at number 8 and showed signs of brilliance but victory was already firmly in India’s grasp. The Kiwi wicketkeeper struck a very uncharacteristic 31 runs of 69 balls – biding his time amidst an electrifying atmosphere in Hyderabad. Daryl Tuffey was the last man dismissed – trapped LBW by Zaheer Khan – which ended the New Zealand innings at 208 all out, giving India a convincing victory. 

    Brief Scores | Scorecard | Videos

    India 353/5 (Sehwag 130, Tendulkar 102, Dravid 50*, Styris 2/46) defeated New Zealand 208 all out (Styris 54, McCullum 31, Cairns 23, Zaheer Khan 3/30, Agarkar 2/28, Kumble 2/36)

    Man of the Match: Virender Sehwag