Beginning of a new era in Indian cricket as Men in Blue take on the Black Caps
There is no cessation for cricket fans to cheer for the Men in Blue who aim to avenge the loss that they suffered the last time they met New Zealand. The new chapter has begun with Rohit Sharma leading the side in T20Is. KL Rahul was promoted to the team's vice-captain. The team is under a new head coach in the form of former Indian cricketer Rahul Dravid.
Head Coach Rahul Dravid at the Pre-match Press Conference spoke about the management and workload, "Workload management is important. Players aren't machines. We want all our players fresh for the challenges ahead. It's very simple, we have to monitor every series we play. Workload management is an important aspect of cricket. We see that in football too. The mental and physical well-being of players will be a priority. We need to do a balancing act, have to work towards having players fit for the big tournaments."
Kane Williamson has opted out of T20Is, and Tim Southee has been named the stand-in captain. Tim reflected on the tight scheduling, quarantine and its impact on the players saying, "It's something we can't control and something we just have to adapt to and get used to, but it does take its toll. A few players have been in a number of bubbles for long periods of time, so it does weigh you down after a while. So, hopefully, we don't have to deal with bubbles for too much longer. It's busy and we haven't really had a chance to stop and think after the disappointment in the way things finished there (in Dubai) but we have to shift our focus to this series and then obviously for the Test series. To represent your country is a great honour so that's gets me up and going."
India – 8
New Zealand– 9
N/R - 1
Yuzvendra Chahal is just four wickets awayfrom becoming the highest wicket-taker in the T20Is for the Men in Blue. Earlier this month, Jasprit Bumrah surpassed his tally while playing against Scotland in WT20.
Chahal is likely to make his 50th T20 International appearance in the first T20 match against the Black Caps.
Harshal Patel looks promising to debut against New Zealand for team India.
Ish Sodhi has taken the most wickets against India in T20Is (17 wickets in 12 matches).
Hitman Rohit Sharma is the leading run-getter for India against New Zealand in this format, scoring 338 runs in 13 innings.
Battles to watch out for:
Rohit Sharma vs Tim Southee
R Ashwin vs Martin Guptill
KL Rahul vs Ish Sodhi
Yuzvendra Chahal vs Daryl Mitchell
Rohit Sharma (C), KL Rahul (VC), Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shreyas Iyer, Suryakumar Yadav, Rishabh Pant (wk), Ishan Kishan (wk), Venkatesh Iyer, Yuzvendra Chahal, R Ashwin, Axar Patel, Avesh Khan, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Deepak Chahar, Harshal Patel, Mohd. Siraj.
New Zealand squad: Tim Southee (C), Todd Astle, Trent Boult, Mark Chapman, Lockie Ferguson, Martin Guptill, Kyle Jamieson, Adam Milne, Daryl Mitchell, Jimmy Neesham, Glenn Phillips, Mitchell Santner, Tim Seifert (wk), Ish Sodhi.