Indian National Cricket team stand-in skipper Rohit Sharma admitted that New Zealand have outplayed them in all the departments following their 80-runs loss in the first T20I. However, this is India’s worst defeat in terms of runs in a T0I game.
Meanwhile, chasing a massive target of 220 runs, India were never on course. After a good start from Tim Southee, Shikhar Dhawan took on Scott Kuggeleijn hitting him for two sixes and a four. But Southee came back strong to dismiss skipper Rohit Sharma with a well-directed bouncer. Although Dhawan and Vijay Shankar – promoted to the top-order tried to bail India out, but once Dhawan departed, they lost back to back wickets to drain out of the match.
The spin duo of New Zealand – Ish Sodhi and Mitchell Santner spun their magic to trouble the Indian batsmen. Sodhi and Santner picked two each while Southee bagged three to hand India their worst T20I defeat.
Previously, New Zealand produced an excellent batting effort after losing the toss. It was wonderfully set up by the opening duo of Seifert and Munro, the former in particular was more destructive with his unorthodox methods at the crease. He notched up his maiden T20I fifty and nearly got to the century too while Munro and Williamson chipped in with vital contributions. As did Taylor and Kuggeleijn at the end with cameos to push the total close to the 220-run mark.
On a good pitch that got better with the dew coming in, India’s bowlers got a pasting with only Chahal and to an extent, Krunal, having some respectability to their figures. The fielding at times also wasn’t upto the mark with some simple catches going down.
New Zealand outplayed us
Rohit Sharma credited the Black Caps after the hosts routed India from the first ODI at Wellington. India lacked small partnerships – which Rohit feels is the main reason behind their loss. However, it was just a bad day in business for them as they have chased down this kind of target in the past.
But Rohit Sharma sounded upbeat about coming back in the next game on February 8 (Friday).
“It was a tough game. We were outplayed in all three departments. We have chased such targets in the past and that is why we played with eight batsmen, but we didn’t have small partnerships and that made it tough. New Zealand though played well, they had partnerships. As a team, we have been good at chasing down targets which is why we play with eight batsmen, but we just couldn’t do it tonight,” Rohit said at the presentation ceremony.
“We need to go to Auckland, assess at the conditions and take it forward,” he concluded.