24th January, 2020
India started preparations for this year's T20 World Cup after beating New Zealand by six wickets in the first match of the five-match series on Friday, thanks to the brilliant innings of Shreyas Iyer and KL Rahul.
Earlier, with the help of aggressive half-centuries from Colin Munro and captain Kane Williamson, New Zealand made 203 for five using full Eden Park short boundary. In response, India achieved the target with one over remaining. India did not start well and Rohit Sharma was dismissed for seven runs in the second over. After this, however, Rahul continued his superb form, scoring 56 runs in 27 balls with four fours and three sixes. Captain Kohli played well with him, scoring an innings of 45 runs in 32 balls which included three fours and a six. India, however, lost the wickets of Rahul in the tenth over and Kohli in the 12th over. At that time, India needed 83 runs in 53 balls. After this Shreyas Iyer took the front. Iyer scored an unbeaten 58 off 29 balls which included five fours and three sixes. He was chosen Man of the Match for this performance.
In the New Zealand innings, Munro scored 59 runs in 42 balls with six fours and two sixes. At the same time, Williamson scored 51 runs in 26 balls with four fours and four sixes. Ross Taylor remained unbeaten on 54 off 27 balls. Except Jasprit Bumrah (one wicket for 31 runs), all the bowlers of India proved to be expensive. India won the toss and decided to bowl. The Indian team introduced a combination of six bowlers including all-rounder Shivam Dubey and Ravindra Jadeja. Yuzvendra Chahal was preferred over Kuldeep Yadav and Shardul Thakur was preferred over Navdeep Saini. Rishabh Pant was excluded.
New Zealand started fast. Munro and Martin Guptill scored 68 in the powerplay. This is New Zealand's best score in the Powerplay in T20 cricket against India. Shardul Thakur took one wicket for 44 runs, while Mohammed Shami conceded 53 runs and did not get any wickets. India tried six bowlers in the first eight overs. Dubey broke this partnership by dismissing Guptill, whose catch was caught by Rohit Sharma. After this Williamson came on the field and he added 36 runs in 24 balls with Munro. He completed his half-century in 36 balls. Thakur sent Munro to the pavilion. Four balls later, Ravindra Jadeja dismissed Colin de Grandhomme (0).
New Zealand's score was 117 for three in the 13th over, but Williamson and Taylor shared a 61-run partnership from 28 balls. Taylor hit three fours and three sixes. He scored 22 runs in Shami's 16th over and completed a half-century in 25 balls. This was his first half-century in T20 cricket in six years. Williamson also hit Pachasa in 25 balls. The half-century partnership between the two was completed in just 24 balls. Williamson was dismissed by Chahal. Taylor took New Zealand across 200 runs. Bumrah suffered a left ankle injury during the fallout in the 20th over and was seen groaning with pain. However, he promptly bowled the last four balls.
Category: Sports: Cricket