The 2016 ICC World T20 began on 8th March with matches between Group A and Group B teams. The 13th match of the cricket tournament was also the first match played by two of the Super 10 teams. The game saw India and New Zealand play it out at the Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium in Jamtha, Nagpur.
With India hosting the tournament, it was somewhat of a disappointment when the hosting team was beaten by New Zealand by 47 runs. The match ended with 126 – 7 in 20.0 overs for New Zealand, and 79 all out in 18.1 overs for India.
It was apparent that the India team was struggling when five out of its seven top batsmen only made a handful of runs each, none of the five reaching even 10 runs. The only two batsmen who reached double digits were MS Dhoni who made 30 runs, and Virat Kohli who made 23 runs.
The New Zealand team had read the pitch well, and played it to their advantage. Kane Williamson, along with New Zealand pitch advisors made the decision to focus on their spinners rather than their top pacers. Nathan McCullum, Ish Sodhi, and Mitchell Santner were good choices, together taking down nine of the India team’s players. Williamson also chose to bat first, and while the team ended with what had seemed a very low 126 runs, the Indian batsmen simply could not make it past the New Zealand bowlers.
While the New Zealand team are clearly skilled, Dhoni said that the reason his team lost was more because the India team had not played as well as it should have.
Dhoni said: “It was our batting that let us down. There were quite a few soft dismissals. Maybe it was our shot selection… there was no partnership also.”
On 19th March, India will play its second match in the ICC World T20 against its well-known rivals, Pakistan. The match will take place in Kolkata at Eden Gardens.