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India vs New Zealand, 1st ODI: Sun stopped play at McLean Park. Here's why

Play was interrupted when the sun made it difficult for the batsmen to spot the ball, leading to an interruption that has never been seen in international cricket before.

India TV Sports Desk India TV Sports Desk
New Delhi Updated on: January 23, 2019 13:13 IST
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India vs New Zealand: Sun stopped play at McLean Park. Here's why

In a first, a cricket match was stopped not due to rain or poor light, but due t Sun! Yes, you read that right. On Wednesday, the first ODI between India and New Zealand in Napier was stopped due to bright sunlight being straight into the batsman's eyes.

Play was interrupted when the sun made it difficult for the batsmen to spot the ball, leading to an interruption that has never been seen in international cricket before.

Chasing 158, India were cruising at 44 for one in 10 over when play was stopped. Virat Kohli and Shikhar Dhawan were batting on 2 and 29 respectively.

"The setting sun is directly in the eyes of the batsmen. So we got to consider the safety of the players, umpires. So we have decided to suspend play until conditions improve. This is the first time in my 14 years I have seen something like this happen on a cricket field. Good news is we have 30 minutes extra time. We are hoping to be back in 30 minutes and it will still be a 50-over game," explained umpire Shaun Haig. 

Normally, the stadiums around the world are built keeping in mind the positioning of the sun. However, it wasn't the case with McLean Park, which is positioned East-West, unlike the other stadiums where the pitch faces the North-South direction.

Stoppages due to sun have been witnessed in the past here during the dometic competitions, and reportedly, also in few English grounds, but none of them were international matches.

"We had talked about it in the pre-series chat. It's something different," said New Zealand star batsman Ross Taylor.

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