Team India suffered a humiliating exit at the 2022 T20 World Cup as England thrashed them by 10 wickets in the second semi-final. The Men in Blue will look to rebound against New Zealand in a three-match T20I series, with the first game to be played in Wellington on Friday, November 18.
As many as eight players who were part of India's squad for the T20 World Cup have been named in the contingent traveling to New Zealand. Hardik Pandya, touted to be the side's next full-time T20I captain, has been handed the reins, with Rishabh Pant as his deputy.
India's squad for the New Zealand T20I series: Hardik Pandya (c), Rishabh Pant (vc & wk), Shubman Gill, Ishan Kishan, Deepak Hooda, Suryakumar Yadav, Shreyas Iyer, Sanju Samson (wk), Washington Sundar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Arshdeep Singh, Harshal Patel, Mohammed Siraj, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Umran Malik
Here are three Indian players who excelled in the 2022 T20 World Cup and will be firmly in the spotlight against New Zealand.
#3 Arshdeep Singh
Only 19 matches into international cricket, Arshdeep Singh has become one of India's most reliable T20I bowlers. He has stepped up admirably in the absence of Jasprit Bumrah to become the Men in Blue's go-to death bowler and has also been lethal with the new ball.
Arshdeep was India's leading wicket-taker in the 2022 T20 World Cup with 10 scalps from six games, including a game-defining three-wicket haul in the team's Super 12 opener against Pakistan. The left-armer will have the opportunity to go from strength to strength against the Kiwis, whom he has never faced in international cricket.
#2 Suryakumar Yadav
The No. 1-ranked T20I batter in the world, Suryakumar Yadav will have all eyes on him not just because of his status in the shortest format but also because of his outrageous strokeplay. A player with the ability to access all areas of the ground, SKY was a treat to watch in the T20 World Cup.
Suryakumar made valuable contributions against the Netherlands and Bangladesh apart from recording audacious fifties versus South Africa and Zimbabwe. His knock against the Proteas (68), in an innings where no other batter crossed 15, was a particular standout.
Suryakumar has some support around him now, with intent-rich players like Rishabh Pant and Sanju Samson in the mix. With some weight off his shoulders, the batter could perform even better.
#1 Hardik Pandya
India's stand-in captain for the New Zealand T20Is, Hardik Pandya is a box-office cricketer. By the time the 2024 T20 World Cup rolls around, the IPL-winning skipper might even be permanently at the helm of the 20-over side.
Hardik underwhelmed with the bat for the majority of the T20 World Cup but made up for it with an excellent fifty in the semi-final. He was India's second-highest wicket-taker with eight scalps, and the only two games in which he went wicketless were those in which his bowling had no consequence on the outcome.
All eyes will be on Hardik Pandya wherever he goes. Can the new captain usher in a new era in Indian cricket?
Poll : Should Hardik Pandya be India's permanent T20I captain?