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Shreyas Iyer walked back to the dugout for a golden duck during the series-deciding third T20I between New Zealand and India at McLean Park in Napier on Tuesday, November 22. It was once again the short-ball that led to his downfall and Tim Southee who had played under him for KKR in IPL 2022 brilliantly exploited his weakness in the game that mattered.
Chasing a manageable total of 161 to seal the series, Shreyas Iyer walked in to bat in the third over with the Indian team having lost their openers Rishabh Pant and Ishan Kishan. The occasion was perfect for Iyer to get set and go on to play a match-winning knock, but it was not to be.
Shreyas Iyer fails to tackle the short ball yet again
On the penultimate delivery of the third over, stand-in captain Tim Southee decided to target Iyer’s weakness straightaway. He bowled a well-directed short ball around the off stump line. The batter looked totally clueless as he hopped a bit and attempted to guide the ball that was way too close to his body.
Unfortunately for him, the connection was not that good as the ball was brilliantly collected by James Neesham who showed a great presence of mind while taking a well-judged catch at first slip. Thus, Southee was on a hat-trick as the Mumbai cricketer took a long walk back in disappointment.
Shreyas has been uncomfortable against the short-ball since the IPL 2022. After some spectacular batting performances in the home series against Sri Lanka earlier this year, the 28-year-old looked to be in contention of the recently-concluded ICC T20 World Cup in Australia.
Nonetheless, Shreyas Iyer’s inability to deal with the short ball only kept getting worse as the month progressed. He was dismissed in a similar fashion during the rescheduled fifth Test match against England in July and showed no signs of improvement in whatever chances he got thereafter.
Here’s how the Twitterati reacted to Shreyas Iyer’s short ball woes: