WATCH: Mitchell Santner floors everyone with physics-defying one-handed catch
New Zealand's Mitchell Santner showcased extraordinary agility with a gravity-defying catch, assisting teammate Lockie Ferguson in dismissing Afghanistan's captain Hasmatullah Shahidi. This remarkable feat occurred on the final delivery of the 14th over during the NZ v AFG 2023 ODI World Cup match in Chepauk on Wednesday (October 18).
Ferguson, known for his formidable pace, challenged Shahidi with a well-directed short delivery. Despite being rushed into the pull shot, Shahidi managed to make contact with the ball, albeit not convincingly. The ball soared towards the square leg region.
Santner, who was positioned in the square leg region anticipated the catch brilliantly and leaped into the air to execute one of the tournament's finest catches.
Santner's spectacular grab left the audience in awe and brought an end to Shahidi's arduous struggle in the middle. Shahidi failed to steer Afghanistan's run-chase in the right direction, ultimately departing with a personal score of 8 off 29 balls at a strike rate of 27.58 with just one boundary.
The Afghan chase was far from flawless, losing their openers swiftly and with Santner's incredible effort, Shahidi's departure further worsened their situation. They were eventually bundled out for a trivial 139 as they succumbed to a massive 149-run defeat.
Earlier, New Zealand's innings got off to a shaky start, finding themselves in a precarious position at 110/4 after losing three quick wickets. However, a pivotal partnership between Glenn Phillips and Tom Latham turned the tide for New Zealand.
Phillips notched up an impressive 71 runs, while Latham contributed 68 runs, propelling their team to a challenging total of 288/6 in 50 overs. Their partnership, worth 144 runs, proved to be a game-changer. Despite disciplined bowling from Afghanistan, New Zealand managed to sustain a steady scoring rate and set a formidable score of 288 in their allotted 50 overs.