Daily Mirror (Sri Lanka) - - SPORTS -

In­clement English weather claimed yet an­other World Cup match after In­dia’s group game against 2015 fi­nal­ists New Zealand was called off with­out a ball be­ing bowled at Trent Bridge yes­ter­day.

A soggy out­field from overnight show­ers had al­ready de­layed the start of the con­test be­tween the tour­na­ment’s only two un­beaten sides.

Um­pires Marais Eras­mus and Paul Reif­fel car­ried out al­most hourly in­spec­tions in in­ter­mit­tent driz­zle be­fore fi­nally throw­ing in the towel in the af­ter­noon.

This was the fourth match to be ei­ther called off or aban­doned in the rain-hit tour­na­ment with many ques­tion­ing the ab­sence of re­serve days for group matches.

“Sen­si­ble de­ci­sion to not play, given the out­field wasn’t fully fit,” In­dia Cap­tain Vi­rat Kohli said.

“One point is not to have bad thing for sides that have won all their games so far. So we’ll take it.”

New Zealand top the ta­ble with seven points, two ahead of In­dia who have played one game fewer.

Hav­ing won their pre­vi­ous three games, Kiwi Skip­per Kane Wil­liamson was not too wor­ried and wel­comed the gap be­fore fac­ing South Africa on Wed­nes­day.

“We’ve been about four days and we haven’t seen the sun, so this doesn’t sur­prise us. It’s not ideal, but lit­tle bit of time off is also im­por­tant,” Wil­liamson said.

“We have some break now mid­way through, so it’s a good chance for the guys to freshen up and look for­ward to the next chal­lenge.”

“South Africa is a very good side, we know ev­ery time we play them, they’re ex­tremely com­pet­i­tive, but we have a few days to re­fresh and come back.”

The hos­tile weather de­nied In­dia an op­por­tu­nity to trial their new open­ing pair with K. L. Rahul, re­plac­ing the in­jured Shikhar Dhawan, join­ing Ro­hit Sharma at the top of the or­der.

Dhawan, who was hit by a Pat Cum­mins bouncer dur­ing his match-win­ning cen­tury against Aus­tralia at the Oval, is likely to miss In­dia’s next three games.

“Shikhar will be in a plas­ter for a cou­ple of weeks, we’ll as­sess and see,” Kohli said.

“Hope­fully he’ll be avail­able for the later half and the semi-fi­nals. He is mo­ti­vated and we wanted to keep him back.”

The Ground Staff pull the cov­ers off the pitch after a rain de­lay

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