In an eerie reminder of what unfolded in the 2019 ODI World Cup and the 2016 T20 World Cup, New Zealand humbled India in another ICC tournament courtesy of a stellar performance with bat and ball. Perhaps it was telling that a makeshift opener, sent in to maximise the powerplay overs, was responsible for New Zealand taking another hit at India's already pathetic net run rate.
Daryl Mitchell, who opened the batting in T20 cricket for the first time against Pakistan earlier in the week, carted the Indian bowlers around with zero respect, racing to 49 in 35 balls. In a group where Afghanistan could spring a major surprise if they just win a game against India or New Zealand thanks to their humungous net run rate, New Zealand's carnage will have a huge impact.
Mitchell was responsible for a large chunk of it as he thwarted the Indian bowlers around with no care in the world even as Kane Williamson and earlier, Martin Guptill, held one end up. Mitchell's stellar attack will hold New Zealand in good stead for the next few games as they now know the tactic to utilise someone as attacking as Mitchell at the top of the order on these sluggish wickets bear fruit.
But the story of the match was formed in the first half when Kane Williamson sent India in to bat after winning the toss. While conditions in UAE have helped batting later in the game in this T20 World Cup, India's debacle, that began with an ugly hoick to be out caught in the deep, had little to do with the conditions or Trent Boult.