New Zealand vs India, 1st T20 Match Prediction2020-01-25
Eden Park, Auckland, New Zealand
Can India set the T20 record straight against Kiwis?
India will win this match!
T&Cs apply, 18+
The first game of the five-match T-20 series between New Zealand and India will commence on 24th march at Eden Pak, Auckland. Both the teams are coming off to this T20 series on contrasting results, New Zealand was beaten by Australia 3-0 in test series whereas India won their last ODI series against a strong Australian side and will be high on confidence. Both sides possess very top class batsmen and bowlers.
However, Kiwi's strength would be depleted due to the injuries of their few key players. The last time both sides competed in the T20 format, it was in early 2019 when the Kiwis beat India 2-1. Besides, Kiwis boast of a very great record versus the men in blue as they got nearly 70% win records against India in T20 and they would be eying to continue their dominant run.
On the other hand, after a clinical performance in the home season, it will be a good opportunity for an in-form Indian side to set script history against Kiwis.
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The Blackcaps would be high on confidence when they take on India, as they have tasted victory in four out of five matches and are yet to lose a T20I series against India at home.
On the batting front, Colin Munro was also good in the last T20 series between the two teams but he may or may not get an opportunity to open alongside Martin Guptill this time. Tim Seifert is expected to open the batting, with Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor following at Number 3 and 4. Wicketkeeper Tim Seifert was the top run-scorer in the last T20 series against India with 139 runs from 3 innings at an average of 46.33 and will be expected to be among the top scorers again. Skipper Ken Williamson is a vital cog in the Kiwis batting line-up. He is a superb player of spin and hence he would look to hold the inning from one end against the quality Indian spinner.
Colin de Grandhomme is a certainty at number 5. He is a Kiwis top scorer lately, scored 301 runs from the last 11 innings at an average of 27.36. The only choice for New Zealand would be to either play the all-rounder Daryl Mitchell or fit in Colin Munro at the top and push the others one position each in the batting order.
Mitchell Santner and Ish Sodhi, the two Kiwi spinners, have a good record against India and both are expected to be part of the playing XI. Santner is leading wicket-taker for Kiwis last year, picked 19 wickets from 11 games. He is also a handy batsman down the order. Hamish Bennett, Blair Tickner and Tim Southee are likely to be the three New Zealand quicks, in the absence of Trent Boult and Lockie Ferguson.
Key Player – Tim Seifert, Kane Williamson, Mitchell Santner
Mitchell Santner, Hamish Bennett, Colin Munro, Blair Tickner, Tim Seifert, Colin de Grandhomme, KS Williamson, Martin Guptill, Ross Taylor, Ish Sodhi, TG Southee
India have gone in with a pretty similar squad which took on West Indies at home. India’s batting line-up is one of the best in the white-ball game at present. Notably, the top three(Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma and K L Rahul) has been doing the bulk of the scoring in recent times. The man in form Rohit Sharma will open the Indian inning. He was also awarded recently the ICC ODI cricketer of the last year. He smashed the match-winning century in his last international games. However, he doesn't hold a great record against the Kiwis, scored just 198 in 9 games. In the past, he had struggled against the Kiwis swing bowler, and it will be a challenge for him to play in the bowling friendly conditions. Due to injury to regular opener Shikhar Dhawan, K L Rahul will open the inning along with Rohit. He is in great form of late, scored 455 runs from last 11 innings at an average of 45.50.
Virat Kohli, arguably the best batsmen in cricket at the moment, scored 522 runs from last 14 T20 innings at a staggering average of 74.57. His batting exploits always make him the biggest threat for any opponent team. Shreyas Iyer and Manish Pandey are likely to bat in the middle order while the race will be between Shivam Dube and Rishabh Pant for the number 6 spot.
In the last ODI series between the two teams, Indian spinners were their trump card and affected multiple Kiwi batting collapses. The team would expect their tweakers to rise to the occasion once again. Washington Sundar and Kuldeep Yadav will be the specialist spinner whereas Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Sami will form the pace attack.
Key Players: Virat Kohli, K L Rahul, Jasprit Bumrah
Virat Kohli, YS Chahal, Shreyas Iyer, Lokesh Rahul, Rohit Sharma, Shivam Dube, Manish Pandey, Ravindra Jadeja, JJ Bumrah, SN Thakur, Mohammed Shami
Weather in Auckland on Friday exected to be partly cloudy. The temperature will be around 25-degree Celcius whereas Humdity will be 73%.
Eden Park features a drop-in pitch and is generally slowish. Good for batting and is hard on the bowlers.
The match will be played at Eden Pak in Auckland. With a capacity of 50,000, Eden Park is easily the largest stadium in New Zealand. Its straight boundaries are as small as 55 meters, which gives the batsmen an edge. Even top edges fly over the boundary.
Out of last 20 T20 at this venue, 9 games were won by batting first where 8 games won by chasing team. 245 has been the highest score at this venue. Also, as it will be the first game of the series and both team would look to chase the score.
Hence, we expect the team winning the toss will look to bowl first at this venue.
A look at the current form of the Indian side suggests that it will be very hard to beat them. They got many star performers on their side and they are consistently performing at the international level.
On the other hand, though Kiwis holds a very strong record against India, their player in the current squad are not consistent and hence India will have an edge considering their recent form.
Hence, we predict India will win this match and take 1-0 lead in the series.
India will win this match!
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