India complete T20 series sweep against New Zealand with record win
22 November, 2021
Captain Rohit Sharma and coach Rahul Dravid enjoyed a memorable start to their leadership tenures as India defeated World Cup finalists New Zealand by 73 runs to sweep the T20 series 3-0 in Kolkata on Sunday.
Left-arm spinner Axar Patel engineered New Zealand's batting collapse in the third over with two wickets during the visitors' attempt to chase 185.
Opener Daryl Mitchell and Mark Chapman were two of Patel's three wickets in an impressive spell of 3-9.
It was India's biggest win against New Zealand in T20 cricket by runs margin.
"It's nice to start well," Dravid, who took over from Ravi Shastri after the T20 World Cup in the UAE, said.
"But we have to be realistic about this win and keep our feet on the ground. It's been really good to see some of the younger guys come through."
Martin Guptill was the only Kiwi batsman to put up a fight, scoring 51 runs off 36 before falling to leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal.
After two expensive overs, Chahal found his groove in the third with Guptill's wicket to finish with respectable 1-26.
Seamer Harshal Patel continued his impressive start to international cricket with 2-26. Rookie all-rounder Venkatesh Iyer impressed with 1-12 in his first outing as a bowler for India.
Earlier, Harshal came to India's rescue with a late order cameo scoring 18 off 11 along with Chahar, who cracked 21 off 8.
Captain Sharma top-scored for India, making 56 off 31 as the hosts posted 184-7.
Stand-in New Zealand captain Mitchell Santner was his team's most impressive bowler with a 3-27 spell.
Both teams have rested several regular players for the series that began only three days after the Black Caps lost in the Dubai T20 World Cup final to Australia.