Australia captain Aaron Finch and his New Zealand counterpart Kane Williamson with the umpires during one of the many inspections at the McLean Park at Napier    Getty Images
Australia captain Aaron Finch and his New Zealand counterpart Kane Williamson with the umpires during one of the many inspections at the McLean Park at Napier Getty Images

The second One-Day International (ODI) between New Zealand and Australia in the ongoing Chappell-Hadlee Trophy 2016-17 was on Monday abandoned due to an unsafe outfield. New Zealand remain ahead 1-0 having clinched a narrow 6-run victory in the opening game of the three-match ODI series. The field at McLean Park in Napier remained soggy and the conditions under the foot were too wet, which posed a danger to the safety of the players. The umpires at one stage had called for a start which was delayed by three hours, reducing the game to 37-overs-per-side contest. However, it was cancelled as well when a further inspection helped the umpires determine that the outfield had not dried up sufficiently.

The clouds had opened up way before the start of the game, delaying the toss and further proceedings. The rains stopped at around 1.50 pm local time, and 10 minutes later the covers were removed. The ground staff got into action immediately with Supersopper was deployed on the McLean Park s outfield. It was decided that another inspection would take place at 3.00 pm local time, which was pushed further to 3.45 pm. It was then decided to have the toss at 4.15 pm, and a truncated contest of 37 overs per side. Full Cricket Scorecard: New Zealand vs Australia, 2nd ODI, Napier

However, the toss was delayed once again as the outfield was not ready for play. Yet another inspection was decided for 5.30 pm, and in between, players had warmed up for play, which raised hopes for those present in the stands to finally see some action. However, despite no rain, the outfield and a particular area at the edge of the 30 yard circle remained damp, which raised safety concerns.

At 6.05 pm, one more inspection was decided, which was pushed ahead once again by 30 minutes. At last, the inspection began at 6.35 pm but it started raining soon, which forced the umpires to call off the match.

Interestingly, last year an ODI between New Zealand and Pakistan last year was abandoned as well without a ball being bowled.

New Zealand will not mind losing out on this contest as they land up in an unassailable lead of 1-0 in the ongoing series. Australia, on the other hand, have no other option to win the third and final ODI on Sunday and retain the Chappell-Hadlee Trophy.