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Top 5 surprise performances from the India-New Zealand Test series

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A look at those who managed to defy pre-series expectations.

Bhuvneshwar Kumar
Bhuvneshwar is mobbed by his teammates after his spectacular spell at Kolkata

By asserting their dominance right from the outset, India inflicted a 3-0 whitewash on New Zealand and regained the number one Test ranking as well. Virat Kohli’s troops started the proceedings by turning their landmark 500th Test into a memorable one after which they sealed the series by outplaying the Kiwis in all departments in the succeeding matches too.

The hosts rode on Ravichandran Ashwin, who continued to spin webs around visiting batsmen, and Cheteshwar Pujara’s composed batting during tantalisingly poised situations. However, there were quite a few displays from unexpected quarters that helped both sides in their quests.

Let us revisit some of those performances that were not anticipated to a certain extent when the series began.

#5 Matt Henry‘s introduction to Indian conditions

Matt Henry
Henry adapted to the testing Indian conditions reasonably well (Image Courtesy: BCCI)

For a seam bowler growing up on conducive pitches outside the subcontinent, going through an Indian tour is never an easy task. However, Matt Henry impressed during his maiden Test outing in India with a solid showing at the iconic Eden Gardens. Though he was greeted by a surprisingly green-tinged surface, the high humidity did not help matters at all.

In particular, the delivery to dismiss Murali Vijay in the first innings demonstrated the perfect use of the new ball. With the Kiwis conceding a significant lead, Henry produced a fine spell to raise their hopes briefly before India’s lower-order took control of the match.

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