The Super 10s group stage of the T20 Cricket World Cup commenced yesterday with the opening game involving the host country and hot tournament favourites India and New Zealand. The ‘Black Caps’ opting to surprise a few with their team selection for the match, taking out two big names in the form of Trent Boult and Tim Southee – two of the leading seamers in international cricket over the past year – and replacing them with 3 spinners.
With India’s bowlers reducing New Zealand to 35-3, they battled on to make 126-7 in their 20 overs with Corey Anderson top scoring for the ‘Black Caps’ with 34 from 42 balls. A total in which many thought India would easily achieve. However this was not the case.
The home crowd in Nagpur were soon silenced during the Indian innings when the hosts were reduced to 12-3 and were eventually bowled out for 79 in 18.1 overs resulting in a shock 47-run victory for New Zealand despite MS Dhoni’s 30. Spin seemed to be the key as 9 Indian wickets fell to spin with Mitchell Santner taking 4-11, Ish Sodhi 3-18 and Nathan McCullum 2-15.
This years T20 Cricket World Cup has a handful of teams that could possibly go on to lift the trophy in 3 weeks time and I wouldn’t count India out just yet! If today’s match is anything to go by then we really are in for a magnificent 3 weeks of cricket full of drama and excitement.