IND v NZ, 1st T20I Preview: Records favor the visitors as Kiwis and India gear up for the T20s

IND v NZ, 1st T20I Preview: Records favor the visitors as Kiwis and India gear up for the T20s

The spotlight will be on the veteran fast bowler Ashish Nehra, who will be playing the final game of his career in front his home fans at the Feroz Shah Kotla, Delhi.

India
India. (Photo Source: Twitter)

The ODI series didn’t pan out the way Kane Williamson would’ve loved, but they really made India work hard for their triumph. In the process, they did drag the hosts to a thrilling final over finish in the decider and showed the world yet again why they’re a serious force to reckon with. It’d come as no surprise if the Indians bow down to them in the format where the Kiwis excel.

The spotlight will be on the veteran fast bowler Ashish Nehra, who will be playing the final game of his career in front his home fans at the Feroz Shah Kotla, Delhi. Though Chief Selector MSK Prasad sounded skeptical about Nehra being in the final XI, that’d be too rude and will not go down well with the fans. In his defense, the game is more important than a player but it seems highly likely that Nehra will get a decent sendoff.

New Zealand bowlers took some serious beating whilst Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli were together, but the fast bowlers made a splendid comeback in restricting India in the final 10. Colin Munro finally fired and with Latham in good nick, things look pretty with the bat. Nevertheless, it’ll be interesting to see if they’ll still remain at the helm of the T20 rankings after the series as India won’t make things easy for them.

Probable XI

India: Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, Virat Kohli (C), MS Dhoni (wk), Manish Pandey, Hardik Pandya, Dinesh Karthik, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Ashish Nehra, Jasprit Bumrah

New Zealand: Martin Guptill, Glenn Phillips, Kane Williamson (C), Colin Munro, Tom Latham (wk), Henry Nicholls, Colin de Grandhomme, Mitchell Santner, Adam Milne, Time Southee, Trent Boult

Focus will be on

Ashish Nehra (India)

Who else, but the lanky fast bowler who served the nation for almost two decades will be hogging a lot of the limelight. There were some incredible Nehra moments over the past, but the injuries never allowed him to express himself the way he would’ve wanted. Nevertheless, he’s a World Cup winner and one of the longest-serving cricketers in Indian cricket history. The entire Indian team will give him a grand sendoff for sure.

Trent Boult (New Zealand)

Trent Boult is definitely one of the best in the business and his heroics over the past few years made him a backbone of the side. Ever since his debut, he has been such a pivotal contributor in their meteoric rise. He has a great record in India against has been phenomenal and he is off to a good start with his exploits in the ODI series.

Playing combinations

India

Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan will be opening the innings as always, with the king of T20 cricket Virat Kohli coming in at 3. Dinesh Karthik might be coming in at 4, with MS Dhoni, Manish Pandey and Hardik Pandya to follow in the middle. The death overs contest will be mouth watering with some power packed hitters against quality fast bowlers.

Ashish Nehra, for one final time, will be taking the new ball in national colours. Accompanying him would be Jasprit Bumrah, who is making a huge case for himself as the best death overs bowler in the world and thus far, he has convinced many people in that prospect. Axar and Pandya will be the all-rounders, with Chahal and Kuldeep pairing up once again.

New Zealand

Kane Williamson opened the batting last time they played a T20, but this time, Martin Guptill might come out with Glenn Phillips with the skipper coming in at 3. Colin Munro will be back in the middle order, with Tom Latham, Henry Nicholls, and Colin de Grandhomme.

Trent Boult and Tim Southee form a lethal pair and this combination of pace and swing is not easy to counter. The Indian batsmen did find a way against them in the previous game, but the Feroz Shah Kotla will be different. Adam Milne will be their third primetime fast bowler, with Grandhomme and Munro being the part-timers. Mitchell Santner will be the lone spinner for the game.

StatAttack

5 – New Zealand never lost to India, winning all the five games these countries played against each other in the shortest format.

79 – The last time these countries played against each other, India got bowled out for 79.