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  5. The Haunting of Super Over: Are New Zealand the new chokers of world cricket?

The Haunting of Super Over: Are New Zealand the new chokers of world cricket?

Since the introduction of the concept in limited-overs cricket, no team has played as many Super Overs as New Zealand - seven in T20Is and one in ODIs. New Zealand lost in seven of them. 

Aratrick Mondal Written by: Aratrick Mondal New Delhi Published on: January 31, 2020 19:29 IST
Tim Seifert of New Zealand makes his ground as Virat Kohli
Image Source : GETTY

Tim Seifert of New Zealand makes his ground as Virat Kohli of India appeals the bails during game four of the Twenty20 series between New Zealand and India at Sky Stadium

"For the fourth time in seven months, New Zealand have lost Super Over" - This was the most engaging stat on Friday evening, after their Wellington defeat to Team India in the fourth T20I of the series. With every Super Over that the Black Caps have encountered in limited-overs cricket recently, fans fall back to July 14, the day claimed to have started their unfortunate trend for New Zealand. But the larger statistic reveals "Super Overs haven't been too good for New Zealand".

Since the introduction of the concept in limited-overs cricket, no team has played as many Super Overs as New Zealand - seven in T20Is and one in ODIs. And subsequently, no team has lost as many Super Overs as New Zealand - seven. Their trend of redefining rock bottom in tie-breakers was added by another defeat on Friday...

T20I v WI Auckland 2008 (Lost)

T20I v Aus Christchurch 2010 (Won)
T20I v SL Pallekele 2012 (Lost)
T20I v WI Pallekele 2012 (Lost)
ODI v Eng Lord's 2019 (Lost)
T20I v Eng Auckland 2019 (Lost)
T20I v Ind Hamilton 2020 (Lost)
T20I v India Wellington 2020 (Lost)

New Zealand's only Super Over win came against their neighbour Australia back in 2010 at home. And believe it or not, Tim Southee was the hero with his figure of 1 for 6 in that over. 

Since then, New Zealand played six more Super Overs and lost all. But the trend picked the significance since their unfortunate loss in World Cup 2019 final against England. 

The hosts managed to reach the total set by New Zealand - 241 - before the visitors equalled England's score in the Super Over. The title was eventually decided on the basis on the bizarre 'boundary count' rule, leaving New Zealand fans disheartened.

The Black Caps ran into the World Champions again (November end), under similar circumstances, in the T20I series decider at Eden Park. The series was tied at 2-2. The match scores were tied. But New Zealand chocked in the Super Over, managing only half as many runs scored by England.

Less than three months later, New Zealand lost two more, against India, who did not have any experience in tiebreakers until this week. "Super Overs haven't been too good for us, so we probably need to try and do better in regular time. It was a much better performance all round. We fought back well with the ball after their start. Pretty disappointing, losing after an effort like that, but it's a game of small margins," skipper Kane Williamson had said at the post-match presentation after Hamilton defeat. 

Despite their dominance over Jasprit Bumrah in the game on Wednesday, New Zealand choked in the final over where they required nine to win. Mohammed Shami conceded eight runs while picking two wickets. New Zealand maintained composure to score 17 in the Super Over. But Southee gifted 20 for India to win their maiden Super Over. 

Two nights later, New Zealand suffered a similar, losing four wickets in the final over before Southee choked under pressure. 

This misfortune of a trend, dubbed as the ghost of July 14, have certainly made New Zealand the new chokers of world cricket, displacing South Africa from their ever-familiar tag. But the Black Caps will be looking to bounce back from their eighth scare as they head to the picturesque Mt. Maunganui for the final tie against India.

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