India will win
Our prediction is that India will win a tight match against New Zealand in the second T20 international at Eden Park.
The second T20 international of the three-match series between India and New Zealand will be played at Eden Park, Auckland on 8th of February. New Zealand are one-up in the series after the all-round performance at Wellington. India, on the other hand, had to endure their biggest loss in T20 international in terms of runs.
New Zealand celebrated their national day with their biggest victory over India. After repeatedly failing to capitalize on the crucial moments in the ODI series, they took everything that came their way to a mammoth 80 run win against second-ranked India in T20 internationals.
India have now lost 7 of the 9 matches against New Zealand and are yet to win an international T20 match in this country. It will be interesting to see if they could make amends to those stats in the second T20I to keep the series alive.
What an absolutely stunning effort that by New Zealand, especially by Tim Seifert, with the bat in the first T20I against India. Seifert took the game to India right from the beginning. When he got out New Zealand had scored 134 in the 13th over of the innings – 84 of them by Seifert. They eventually reached 219 in 20 overs despite losing a flurry of wickets in the finals few overs.
After being asked to bat first, New Zealand got off to a blazing start reaching 66 without loss by the end of the powerplay. New Zealand reached 100 in the 11th over and continued their merry way to 200 by the 19th over helped by some listless bowling and poor fielding by India. With huge scoreboard pressure, New Zealand had India under pressure from the word go. They easily closed the game out with some intelligent bowling and better field placements.
New Zealand bettered their already good record against India in the T20 internationals but must be wary of the comeback abilities of India after the losses in recent times.
KS Williamson (c), TL Seifert, C Munro, DJ Mitchell, LRPL Taylor, C de Grandhomme, MJ Santner, SC Kuggeleijn, TG Southee, IS Sodhi, LH Ferguson.
Mitchell Santner, Ross Taylor, Daryl Mitchell, Colin Munro, Tim Seifert, Colin de Grandhomme, KS Williamson, Lockie Ferguson, Scott Kuggeleijn, Ish Sodhi, TG Southee
Just like the fourth ODI India were bamboozled by the hosts in the first of the 3-match T20I series at Wellington. Before they know it, New Zealand had scored 11-an-over in the powerplay. All the efforts to pull the game back after that were in-vain as New Zealand reached a mammoth score of 219.
India, hoping for the early help from the Wellington pitch, decided to bowl first on the Westpac Stadium. They were put under the hammer right from the word go. The bad day in the field was made worse by equally bad fielding. The batting had a chance to prove they can go closer to the target if not win it. However, without Kohli to shepherd the innings and the top order falling cheaply, India crumbled to their worst defeat, in terms of runs in T20Is.
As we have seen before this summer, India have come back harder after the losses. But this looks to be their toughest challenge till now. It will be interesting to see how India respond to this embarrassment.
Rohit Sharma (c), Shikhar Dhawan, MS Dhoni, Yuzavendra Chahal, Bhuvaneshwar Kumar, Mohammed Shami, Kuldeep Yadav, Krunal Pandya, Hardik Pandya, Rishabh Pant.
YS Chahal, Khaleel Ahmed, Vijay Shankar, Dinesh Karthik, Rohit Sharma, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Krunal Pandya, Rishabh Pant, MS Dhoni, Shikhar Dhawan, Hardik Pandya
Eden Park stadium at Auckland is a good batting wicket. Australia chased down 243 against New Zealand around a year back at this venue. However, this is generally a win toss bat first wicket. The teams batting first have won 9 of the 17 matches at this venue losing 6 with 2 matches resulting in tie.
Thus, the team winning the Toss should choose to Bat first here to put on a big score first up, and then, should look to defend it under lights.
India lost the 1st ODI against Australia only to come back and win the series – their first bilateral series win in Australia. They lost the dead rubber against New Zealand in the 4th ODI – their biggest loss in terms of ball remaining – only to come back and win the last ODI to make it 4-1. And now, India have just been handed their biggest loss, in terms of runs, by New Zealand in the first T20I of the series. India would be looking to follow their comeback script this summer in the second T20I.
Thus, our prediction is that India will bounce back to keep the T20 series alive with a narrow win against New Zealand in the second T20 international at Eden Park.
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