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Ronchi, Neesham shine in 45-run loss

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 28/05/2017
New Zealand's Kane Williamson during the ICC Champions Trophy Warm-up match between India and New Zealand at The Kia Oval on May 28, 2017 in London, England. © Charlie Crowhurst/Getty Images New Zealand's Kane Williamson during the ICC Champions Trophy Warm-up match between India and New Zealand at The Kia Oval on May 28, 2017 in London, England.

Bright knocks from Luke Ronchi and Jimmy Neesham have provided the main positives for New Zealand as they fell to India by 45 runs in a rain-affected warm-up match for the Champions Trophy.

The Black Caps batted first at The Oval but could only manage 189 all out off 39 overs. Ronchi top scored with a 63-ball 66 while Neesham was not out 46 at the end, putting on 23 for the last wicket with Trent Boult.

It had been satisfying to put early pressure on the Indian bowlers, Ronchi says, although he acknowledged it was an approach which didn't always pay off.

"To be aggressive, that's my natural way of batting," he said. "If I can take that aggressive approach and it gets us off to a flier, then brilliant.

"But there's also the chance of me getting out early, so hopefully it comes off but if it doesn't, I guess that's my role and people understand."

Martin Guptill and Ronchi took the Indians on up front early, piling on 20 runs in the first two overs.

Guptill fell for nine early in the third over, and although Ronchi kept the run rate ticking over, he received little support.

Only Corey Anderson (13) and Mitchell Santner (12) managed double figures before Neesham's run-a-ball knock ended the Kiwi innings on a positive note. It was never going to be enough to hold off the Indian batsmen, who reached 129-3 off 26 overs before the rain came.

Captain Virat Kohli was not out 52.

Under the Duckworth-Lewis system India's target was 84 after 26 overs.

New Zealand's next warm-up match is against Sri Lanka in Birmingham on Tuesday before their opening Champions Trophy match against Australia, also in Birmingham, on Friday.

Neesham said the Kiwis would be looking for noticeable improvement against Sri Lanka.

"We'll look to develop a few of those things that didn't go so well today," he said.

"It'll just be one of those things where it takes a game or two to click back into how things were.

"We're pretty confident that come that first game against Australia we'll be firing again."

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