Daryl Mitchell (49 off 35 balls) and Kane Williamson (33 not out off 31 balls) led New Zealand to an emphatic eight-wicket win over India in an important Group 2 match of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup at the Dubai International Stadium here on Sunday.
After restricting India to paltry 110/7 in 20 overs, New Zealand chased down the target easily with 33 balls to spare.
Martin Guptill began by hitting Varun Chakravarthy for back-to-back boundaries in the third over. Guptill took a boundary off Jasprit Bumrah in the next over. But on the next ball, Guptill miscued a loft to mid-on, Shardul Thakur grabbed it on the second attempt. Daryl Mitchell welcomed Ravindra Jadeja in the final over of Power-play with a six-over long-on followed by back-to-back fours.
Post Powerplay, Mitchell continued this good show, slamming Mohammed Shami for a six-over deep square leg. He then took 14 runs off Thakur in the tenth over, smoking a six over cow corner followed by back-to-back fours. Mitchell stitched a partnership of 72 off 54 balls with Kane Williamson to keep New Zealand steady in the chase.
Mitchell fell a run short of his maiden T20I half-century in the 13th over, holing out to long-on off Bumrah. Williamson hung around to hit two fours off Hardik Pandya in the 14th over before scoring the winning single to complete their first win of the ongoing tournament.
Kane Williamson, New Zealand captain, said, ‘There’s always planning going into game, but this was a great performance against a side that puts up a fight. The surface wasn’t easy to find rhythm on, and the way the openers came out really set things up for the chase. It’s just about adapting to the conditions as well as we could. The way the spinners kept applying pressure was commendable and it was a complete performance. We play against strong teams all the time, and there are match-winners in every side, and we commit to our brand of cricket and today was a good example of that. Ish is an outstanding white-ball bowler, and he’s very experienced in playing T20 cricket, having played in different leagues all over the world, and we’re looking forward to the rest of the games in the league stages’.