The Kiwis trumped India in the first T20I with captain Kane Williamson labelling it as a "complete performance that doesn't happen everyday".
After suffering their worst-ever T20I defeat in terms of runs in the series opener, India will be looking to make a strong statement in the second T20I against New Zealand in Auckland on February 8.
Catch all the live updates from the 2nd T20I here.
The Kiwis trumped India in the first T20I with captain Kane Williamson labelling it as a "complete performance that doesn't happen everyday". Opener Tim Seifert put on a fantastic display of power-hitting merged with exquisite stroke-play en route to his 43-ball 84. The Indian bowlers were taken to the cleaners as pacers Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Hardik Pandya and Khaleel Ahmed leaked a total of 146 runs at 12-per over. Scott Kuggeleijn also chipped in with a quick-fire cameo of 20 off 7 balls to power New Zealand to 219/6 after 20 overs.
In reply, India could only manage 139 in 19.2 overs as the Kiwi bowlers led by the experienced Tim Southee tore through the batting line-up. Southee finished with impressive figures of 3/17 and was the pick of the bowlers with an economy of just 4.25. Despite fielding a team with as many as eight batsmen, India struggled to cope with the scoreboard pressure on a track where the Kiwi batsmen found run-scoring extremely easy.
India could shake things up in their playing XI by replacing Ahmed with either Mohammed Siraj of Siddarth Kaul. Kaul in particular has proved to be most effective in the shortest format and has 94 wickets from 85 outings with an average of just 23.68. Kuldeep Yadav could be another inclusion into the bowling attack as the Kiwi batsmen have struggled to pick him. Kedar Jadav would be a useful addition as he could chip in with a few overs while also contributing with the bat.
The team management could also be tempted to afford young Shubman Gill another opportunity after two failed outings in the ODI series. Gill was impressive in last year’s IPL scoring 203 runs in just 13 matches and will relish the opportunity to display his vast array of shots.
New Zealand who were flawless in the series opener will most likely name an unchanged playing XI for the 2nd T20I. They however will be wary of their past record at this venue having lost five of their last six fixtures at Eden Park.
A win would seal the series for New Zealand and offer a much-needed boost following their 4-1 drubbing in the ODI series. India on the other hand will be eager to maintain their winning momentum having not lost a T20I series since 2016.
India: Rohit Sharma (C), Shikhar Dhawan, Shubman Gill, Rishabh Pant, MS Dhoni (wk), Kedar Jadhav, Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, Siddharth Kaul, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Kuldeep Yadav.
New Zealand: Kane Williamson (C), Daryl Mitchell, Ross Taylor, Colin de Grandhomme, Mitchell Santner, Scott Kuggeleijn, Tim Southee, Ish Sodhi, Lockie Ferguson, Colin Munro and Tim Seifert (wk).
Players to watch out for:
After impressing with his performances in Australia, Pant struggled to get going and managed just 4 runs off 9 balls before spinner Mitchell Santner castled him with a quick yorker. Pant who is trying to force himself into India’s World Cup bound squad will be looking to make a quick comeback in a format where he has amassed 1880 runs from just 61 outings.
Seifert was in imperious form in the series opener and will be hoping to carry that into this match. He found the boundary with considerable ease hitting 7 fours and 6 sixes during his quick-scoring knock. Seifert’s 84-run innings was also his highest score in a T20 International and the wicket-keeper batsman will be hoping to improve on that when he takes the field in Auckland.
Form guide: (recent first)
New Zealand – W W L L L
India – L W NR W W
Betting Odds: (Bet365)
New Zealand: 2.20
Where to watch:The match starts at 11.30 am IST and will be broadcast live on the Star Sports network. Online viewers can catch the action on Hotstar.The Great Diwali Discount!
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