5 MAJOR reasons why India won the T20I series against a formidable New Zealand outfit!

India beat New Zealand in the 3rd T20I at Thiruvananthapuram to clinch its maiden T20I series win against the Kiwis

India beat New Zealand by 6 runs in the 3rd T20I at Thiruvananthapuram to clinch its maiden T20I series win against the visitors. But it wasn’t all that easy in a match curtailed by rain (8 overs per side). The win was also special because India was in a difficult spot at the closure of the first innings as they could only manage to set the Kiwis a target of 67, which did not look sufficient at the outset. Thanks to Bumrah’s and Chahal’s tight spells with the ball, India managed to oust the Kiwis for the first time in a T20I series.

So what exactly led to India trouncing one of the top T20I team in the world? We will list out five reasons that helped India beat the visitors:

1. Dial B for victory:

Owing to Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah’s death bowling, India got bailed out of quite a few crunch situations in the T20I series. In the 8-over decider, Bumrah gave away only 8 runs and even took 2 wickets in a span of two over while defending the shaky target of 67. Bhuvneshwar Kumar was instrumental in the first T20I at Feroz Shah Kotla, Delhi, where he bowled 3 overs for 23 runs and took a wicket along with it while defending a score of 202.

2. Chahal spinning a web:

The young Yuzvendra Chahal has to be one of biggest takeaways from the series. He bowled under immense pressure in powerplay situations, which is tough for any spinner, leave alone a wrist spinner at that. In the first T20I, he bagged two crucial wickets to set the visitors back. He also showed great control over the ball even with the dew around.

3. Rab De Bana Di Jodi (Rohit Sharma-Shikhar Dhawan):

It was the pair of Gabbar and Hitman, as they are popularly known, who set up India’s win in the first T20I at Feroz Shah Kotla by stitching a partnership of 158 runs together. That built the base for Team India’s future right at the outset.

4. Captain Courageous (Virat Kohli):

As expected, Virat Kohli played a pivotal role in creating history as India defeated the Kiwis 2-1. With the bat and as the captain on the field, Kohli never allowed pressure to be taken off the visitors. With devising attacking fields and strategising spinners in the powerplay in Delhi, Kohli sent the message early on in the series. With the bat, he played a cameo in the 1st T20I at Feroz Shah Kotla, an 11-ball 26 blitz! And then, he scored 65 at Rajkot in a losing cause. But Virat features in this list because of his outward marshalling of the troops.

5. Stump-mic expert (MS Dhoni):

Less with the bat and more behind the stumps, Dhoni almost played the role of a commentator in the entire series. One could hear it during the broadcast, Dhoni advising the younger troops what was to be done. At times, the plans worked as well. One can only say, old habits die hard!

In four days time, India will have to switch to whites when they lock-horns with neighbour Sri Lanka in a Test series that is set to start from November 17.

What according to you were the takeaways from the series from the point of view of India?