New Zealand gets an important win over India
The battle between the two iconic captains in the cricketing world - Virat Kohli and Kane Williamson. The iconic leaders faced each other again in a crucial match for both sides to find their winning rhythm in this tournament. Kiwi captain won the toss, elected to bowl first in the match 28 of ICC T20 World Cup.
Team India made two changes - Ishan Kishan and Shardul Thakur were brought in for Surya Kumar Yadav and Bhuveneshwar Kumar. Captain Kohli made a bold move altering the opening pair, having Ishan Kishan with KL Rahul. The top order failed to score big before falling prey to the Kiwi bowlers in the powerplay. Ish Sodhi was impactful in his first two overs, seizing the big wickets of Rohit Sharma and captain Kohli. India concluded their innings at 110/7, Ravindra Jadeja being the highest run-getter (26 off 19). In reply, New Zewland were clinical, getting to the target inside 15 overs with eight wickets to spare.
Virat Kohli expressed himself on team performance during the post-match presentation, "Quite bizarre. I don't think we were brave enough with bat or ball. Didn't have much to defend but we weren't brave when we walked out to field.
"When you play for the Indian cricket team you have a lot of expectations - not just from fans, but players as well. So there's always going to be more pressure with our games and we've embraced it over the years. Everyone who plays for India has to embrace it. And when you cope together as a team you overcome it and we haven't done it these two games. Just because you're in the Indian team and there are expectations doesn't mean you start playing differently. I think we're fine, there's a lot of cricket left to play", Virat Kohli further added.
The Kiwis continued their winning streak over India in the ICC tournaments as they power-played throughout their innings in this match, chasing the scores in the 15th overs with eight wickets in hand. Jasprit Bumrah took both wickets for the Men in Blue.
Kane Williamson spoke about the team's extraordinary performance both with bat & bowl, "There's always planning going into games. But a fantastic all-around performance from us against a formidable India side. We were able to build pressure throughout and the way the openers came out really set the platform."
Ish Sodhi was awarded the player of the match for his 2 for 17 in his four-over spell. "I'm usually quite big on pre-match prep but with this bubble life, we haven't been able to see the ground before we get there. It was our first time here at Dubai and something we had to adapt to. I think a big part of our game is using spin in the middle. I think Southee getting that wicket late in the powerplay was important, it allowed the spinners to bowl", he commented.
Williamson expressed himself on Ish's execution today with the ball saying, "Ish is an outstanding T20 bowler, white-ball bowler in particular. He's been a big part and played in a number of comps, and in these conditions, the spin will play a part."
Team India will be looking forward to finishing the campaign on a higher note with three matches to go. They will look to rectify their errors as they progress to play against their next challenger, Afghanistan, who have won 2 out of their first three matches in Group 2.