After losing the first Test match by 10 wickets, Team India took the field in Christchurch as they locked horns with the hosts in the second Test. Virat Kohli and co. got the chance to bat first again but just like the first Test, the opening partnership could not last long.
The Indian batsmen soon bowed down to the Kiwi bowlers as New Zealand bowled India out for 226 runs. They have even curbed down the trail by 63 runs as Tom Latham and Tom Blundell toiled the Indian bowlers in the final session of the day’s play. Cheteshwar Pujara, Prithvi Shaw and Hanuma Vihari hit a fifty each however, India could not fire in unison.
Here’s a look at the 5 biggest talking points from day 1 of the 2nd Test match between India and New Zealand:
Virat Kohli’s struggle in NZ continues
Indian skipper Virat Kohli seems to be the weakest link of the team’s batting lineup all of a sudden because his inability to play a big inning is exposing the likes of Rishabh Pant and Hanuma Vihari to the newer ball. Although the middle order performed up to the mark, Kohli has failed miserably on this tour and the right-handed batsman will soon try to forget this series.
Ravichandran Ashwin’s exclusion from playing XI
India made two changes to their playing XI. Ishant Sharma missed out because of injury but, Ravichandran Ashwin was surprisingly left out of the playing XI in favour of Ravindra Jadeja. Ashwin did not do anything wrong in the Wellington Test thus, it was tough to understand the reason behind his exclusion.
Kyle Jamieson decimates India, again
The debutante, Kyle Jamieson has been the most impressive bowler of this Test series. The 6 feet 8 inches tall pacer has troubled India a lot and once again he picked up a five-wicket haul to destroy the Indian batting lineup. He got rid of both the half-centurions, Cheteshwar Pujara and Prithvi Shaw as he seems to have laid the foundation for another NZ win.
Tom Latham and Tom Blundell’s opening stand
When one compares the talent possessed by the Indian team and the New Zealand batters, 9 out of 10 fans would pick Indian batsmen to be superior. But, on this tour, the Kiwi batsmen have outshone their rivals. Tom Latham and Tom Blundell stitched an unbeaten partnership of 63 runs to end the day. They showed how the Indian team should have batted as the pair of Toms made short work of the bowling unit comprising Jasprit Bumrah, Umesh Yadav and Mohammed Shami.
New Zealand playing without a spinner
The pitch at Hagley Oval is tailor-made for fast bowlers yet India has went in with two spin bowling options. The home side dropped its sole spinner, Ajaz Patel to include Neil Wagner in the team as their pace bowling unit fired all guns blazing in Christchurch. If the things continue like this, New Zealand should wrap this Test match in 3 days and gain more 60 points in the ICC World Test Championship standings.