IndvsNZL: In the coliseum of Nagpur, which was recently fired under discussions, for its diabolical wicket, India failed to clinch the low scoring game against New Zealand in the first T20I of the sixth T20 WC 2016 in Nagpur, India.
It was a wonderful evening at Nagpur, which saw almost full-attendance of 45000 spectators, waiting and cheering up for India to win the inaugural match of 2016 T20 World Cup.
Toss: New Zealand won the toss and elected to Bat first. A wise decision to which even Dhoni insisted that if they could have won the toss, they would have gone with the same decision. Though, it’s a matter of luck and nobody except the tossing coin can decide the fate of the game, ahead.
Innings 1: New Zealand’s Batting crumbled quickly, Raina, Bumrah charged India’s Bowling line up.
Crushed the first ball with a straight drive for a six, Guptill lost his wicket on a wrong decision in a close call, by Umpire Dharmasena. Ashwin couldn’t grab the opportunity after New Zealand lost their first wicket to him, and managed to give-off runs at every delivery in his later overs. Nehra stiked-off well, managing to pick up Munro’s wicket, with Pandya taking the clean catch. Williamson couldn’t stay long on the pitch, losing his wicket to Raina, falling short of the crease and its advantage was taken by MSDhoni.
Apart from Corey Anderson, Santner and Luke Ronchi, hardly any batsman managed to score the double figure. Corey Anderson with his score of 34, remained the Top Scorer of the match, whereas Luke Ronchi scored sensational 21 runs of 11 deliveries which lead the team to score 126 off 20 overs. Suresh Raina, Bumrah, Nehra and Jadeja took an edge in bowling maintaining a less economy rate and picking up 1 wicket each with Ashwin.
Analysis: Dhoni’s decision to let Ashwin start with the new delivery was a wiser one, but not using an extra spinner on this turning wicket was the bold reason that led NZL to score 120+ on this pitch. Pandya bowled just an over, Dhoni could have utilized the bench strength and gone for the interest of spinners like Negi or Harbhajan, following the odds of this wicket. NZL’s batsman, having a low score on the board and losing some quick wickets, managed to take their scoreboard to a decent level, which gave sometime for their bowlers to experiment. Thanks to Ronchi’s six and 2 fours, which changed the target from 100 to 126 and created the pressure for Team India, while batting second.
Innings 2: Sodhi, Santern crushed India’s core, Dhoni struggled alone till the end.
With the absence of Boult and Southee, critics were curious to know about the next step of Williamson to defend the low score of 126. Like Dhoni did to Ashwin, Kane asked Nathan McCullum to bowl the first over of the innings and it proved, a success.
Shikhar Dhawan tried to sweep off the middle stump delivery, which was too slow that he missed and the bowl rapped directly onto his pads, falling the first wicket to India in the first over. Odds of India’s Standard Batting line up didn’t worked out, with Rohit, Raina and Yuvraj managed to score just 5, 1 and 4 runs respectively.
Team was well managed by Kohli’s sensational strokes and Mahi’s singles, but the well versed innings of Kohli ended with an extra-turn leg spin of Sodhi that edged off his bat short and landed up to the gloves of Wicketkeeper, Ronchi. With Kohli’s wicket, hope for winning the game for India was reduced by a huge factor and only a miracle could save India’s innings. It was Mahi alone, who struggled till the end with Ashwin, who managed a decent score of 10 off 20 deliveries before losing his wicket to Sodhi, losing his balance and going off to pavilion being stumped by Ronchi again. Mahendra Singh Dhoni topped the score-chart with his 30 runs knock off 30 deliveries, before driving the bowl towards long-on for a catch to N.McCullum.
Mitchell Santner, Ish Sodhi and Nathan McCullum proved to be the stars of the day by managing to bowl with the figures of 4-11, 3-18 and 2-15, respectively. A spin friendly track and spinners on action proved to be a success for NZL.
Analysis: New Zealand’s take on India’s chase of 127 runs was questioned when their key wicket taker bowlers ( Trent Boult and Tim Southee) were not playing. If it was NZL to lose this game, Kane was the man to be questioned for this decision, but the decision finally turned to be on the wiser side with their spinners (including part time spinners), who scalped all the wickets.
From India, apart from Kohli and Dhoni, other batsman didn’t found a way out to play those turning deliveries and lost their wicket without clinching an edge over bowlers.
Efforts put up by Sodhi, Santner and a great start by Nathan gave strength to their bowling. Also, an astounding fielding by the NZL team, giving no chance to batsmen to find the gaps, made it really tough for India and ended their innings with another low score of 79.
Match result: New Zealand won the match by 47 runs, leading the Group B points table. With this win they have cleared the first barrier by defeating the home team, under pressure.
Man Of the Match: Mitchell Santner, proved his performance with a knock of crucial 18 runs off 17 deliveries and sliding up 4 wickets, giving off 11 runs in just 4 overs. Also, it was a noticeable innings because he never played any game in India before this match.
He was surely, an unpredictable man leading NZL’s way to success.
Next Match of India: vs Pakistan at Eden Gardens on 19th March, 7:30PM