NZ spin trio hand India shock defeat

Toss New Zealand chose to bat v India
Live scorecard and ball-by-ball details

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Styris: India are favourites for a reason

New Zealand went for a horses-for-courses approach upon seeing a dry and cracked pitch in Nagpur, and their conviction was such that they left out their two best fast bowlers Trent Boult and Tim Southee to accommodate three spinners.

The visitors made a far more orthodox call when the toss fell in their favour and opted to put runs on the board and allow Nathan McCullum, Mitchell Santner and Ish Sodhi do their bit with the backing of scoreboard pressure. New Zealand must have green lit this XI factoring in the utility of seam-bowling allrounders Corey Anderson and Grant Elliott.

India captain MS Dhoni, often loathe to change a winning combination, stuck to the same XI that won the Asia Cup a week ago. Jasprit Bumrah made his World T20 debut, but he has already been called irreplaceable because of his skill at the death. He combines with Ashish Nehra, whose second coming could not have gone better. He still bowls at 140 kph and swings the new ball as he used to.

Then there is the Virat Kohli factor, especially in a chase. The man has averaged over 100 in T20I cricket since the start of the year. He seems in better control of his shots outside off stump and has thus looked far more effective at converting his starts and being India’s batting leader.

New Zealand will look to Williamson, and Ross Taylor, who has recently recovered from a muscle tear, to perform a similar role for their team. They tend to be spooked by spin – and it was no clearer than during the last time they were in the subcontinent for the World T20 when Rangana Herath toppled them for 60 all out – and pulled out all the stops to prevent a repeat. Today, they bat down to No. 10.

India: 1 Shikhar Dhawan, 2 Rohit Sharma, 3 Virat Kohli, 4 Suresh Raina, 5 Yuvraj Singh, 6 Hardik Pandya, 7 MS Dhoni (capt and wk), 8 Ravindra Jadeja, 9 R Ashwin, 10 Jasprit Bumrah, 11 Ashish Nehra

New Zealand: 1 Martin Guptill, 2 Kane Williamson (capt), 3 Colin Munro, 4 Ross Taylor, 5 Corey Anderson, 6 Grant Elliott, 7 Luke Ronchi (wk), 8 Mitchell Santner 9 Nathan McCullum, 10 Ish Sodhi, 11 Adam Milne

Alagappan Muthu is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Source: ESPN Crickinfo

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