After winning the toss, Rohit Sharma put the hosts into bat. New Zealand made a good fist of the opportunity to set a target and raced off the blocks. Seifert and Munro smashed the Indian bowlers all around the park to finish at 66-0 at the culmination of the Powerplay.
Though Krunal Pandya eventually broke the opening stand in the ninth over, the Indians’ joy was short-lived as Williamson came up with an accomplished knock. Seifert, meanwhile, continued on his merry way and notched up his highest T20I score of 84.
A quick succession of wickets followed yet India were never able to control the scoring rate. As a result, India were set a stiff target of 220.
In reply, India got off to the worst start possible as Rohit departed in the third over. Dhawan and Shankar ensured the first six overs were utilised efficiently but neither played long enough to harbour hopes of a victory.
The other batsmen namely Pant, Karthik and Hardik Pandya failed to muster anything substantial and by the time Dhoni had played 10 balls, the game was effectively over as a contest.
The debutant, Daryl Mitchell put the final nail in the Indian coffin at 139 to hand the visitors their worst T20I defeat ever in terms of runs.
Here is a look at five talking points from the game:
#5 New Zealand finally get a good opening stand
New Zealand were expected to provide India with their sternest test of the summer. Yet, they crumbled in the ODI series with their opening woes contributing majorly to their capitulation.
Through the fifty-over games, the hosts’ openers provided awful starts of 5, 23, 10, 14 and 18. However, on Wednesday, the new partnership of Seifert and Munro bludgeoned their way to 86.
With a solid base established, New Zealand were able to cash in and the hosts scored freely in the middle overs too. Moreover, for the first time against India, Williamson walked to the crease without any pressure. Unsurprisingly, he looked much more assured and kept the scoreboard ticking.
New Zealand boasts of several all-rounders capable of being belligerent in the final few overs. However, not many of them possess the ability to build an innings from scratch.
Thus, if New Zealand is to go deep into the World Cup, they need to keep coming up with decent starts.
After all, a good start is a job half done. And especially so for Williamson’s troops.