IND vs NZ: Virat Kohli and Kane Williamson will fight for dominance while India face New Zealand.© AFP
India and New Zealand tackle each other in trouble T20 World Cup clash Sunday at Dubai International Cricket Stadium. Both teams have suffered a defeat in their opening matches, lost very convincingly against Pakistan and will now try to register their first victory in the ongoing tournament. The match could have a massive impact on both teams’ chances of reaching the semi-finals. A defeat in this match can have far-reaching consequences with matches against Afghanistan, Namibia and Scotland remaining after this one.
India were completely outsmarted in their opening match when Pakistan scored a 10-wicket victory. Captain Virat Kohli was the standout for India and recorded a spicy half-century. Rishabh Pant also made a handy contribution, but failed to kick when the team needed him.
Other batsmen had a day to forget as India’s famous top order had little or no response to the pace and swing of Shaheen Shah Afridi. India’s bowling did not come to the party either.
People like Jasprit Bumrah hit wickets Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan ran amok. All in all, it was a nightmare outing for Team India, who had a week to prepare for the match against New Zealand.
New Zealand also lost their opening match against Pakistan. Although they did not perform as poorly as the Indian team, Kane Williamson’s team was also outsmarted.
New Zealand batsmen struggled to get going and were limited to 134 for eight. New Zealand bowlers fought back, reducing Pakistan to 69 for four in 11.4 overs, but Asif Ali and Shoaib Malik produced a match-winning partnership to get their team home.
New Zealand will at least create courage from the fact that their bowlers have managed to keep them in the game. But the Blackcaps will be aware that India certainly cannot have another day off like against Pakistan.
India will also be wary of the New Zealanders. Kane Williamson’s team beat India in the 2019 World Cup semi-final and then again in the World Cup final in England. India will try to avenge those defeats and make a statement of intent in the tournament, especially to some of those who have already written it off, even though they have only played one game.
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