India vs New Zealand 2020: Takeaways for Team India From the ODI Series

“ODIs aren’t too relevant this year compared to Tests and T20s”, Indian skipper Virat Kohli said after they lost the third ODI against the Kiwis at Mount Maunganui. India registered a dubious record after being whitewashed by the Kiwis in their very first ODI series away from home in the new year. India have lost all the matches in a bilateral series of three or more in ODIs for the fourth time – 0-5 to West Indies in 1983-84, 0-5 to West Indies in 1988-89, 0-4 to South Africa in 2006-07 and 0-3 to New Zealand in 2019-20. In the recent loss, however, there have been a few takeaways for Team India from the ODI series. 

Here is a look at the Takeaways for Team India from the ODI series.

First ODI Series Whitewash in 31 Years

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“ODIs aren’t too relevant this year compared to Tests and T20s, but to find people who can play that way under pressure is a big revelation for us and a big plus,” the Indian captain said after the win. This comment by Virat Kohli has not gone down well with Indian cricket fans and experts. Also that India were whitewashed for the first time in 31 years under his captaincy has brought his captaincy into the limelight.

The Indian team has been losing the first ODI of a three-match series since the series against West Indies last year and once again it started the same way. He became the fourth Indian captain after Kapil Dev, Dilip Vengsarkar and Sachin Tendulkar to suffer a whitewash in a series of 3 or more matches. For the first time in 23 years, India were whitewashed in an ODI series with 3 or more matches. This is only the 4th such instance in India’s ODI cricket history.

Also Read: New Zealand vs India 3rd ODI Preview

Virat Kohli’s Rare Lull With the Bat

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 There were a lot of loopholes in the performance of the Indian team under Kohli. Kohli himself looked out of touch throughout the series registering scores of 51, 15 and 9 in the three games. He averaged just 25 in this series which is also the lowest for him since the 16.33 he averaged in the ODI series against Bangladesh in 2015. In the absence of Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan, Kohli was expected to lead the Indian batting attack which has failed at doing. His failure to lead the way with the bat has certainly been one of the takeways for Team India from the ODI series. 

Poor Team Selection 

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The selection of Kedar Jadhav in the first two games in the ODI series was another highlight of Virat Kohli’s poor team selection. Seen as an all-rounder, Jadhav was not used with the ball in the two matches that he played. His contributions with the bat were also not significant. He played a good hand of 26 helping India to post a score close to 350 in the first ODI in Hamilton. In Auckland, where Jadhav had an opportunity to win the match for India, he played a loose shot to get out scoring just nine of as many as 27 deliveries.

This has certainly made Indian fans and well-wishers question his role in the side and the reason behind Kohli sticking with him despite Jadhav not responding with performance. Jadhav was played in place of a more deserving Manish Pandey, who makes the most of every opportunity that he gets. He scored a crucial 50 in the final T20I helping India to post a respectable score from a precarious position. Pandey also played a good knock in the third ODI when he scored scoring 42 off 48 to help the team post a competitive 296.

Also Read: List of Winners in Cricket Australia Awards 2020

Collective Failure of Indian Pacers

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This was one of the worst series collectively for the Indian pacers. Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammad Shami, Navdeep Saini and Shardul Thakur were part of the Indian team for the ODI series and any of them did not have the wicket-taking form in the series. The Indian bowlers bowled a total of 85.2 overs throughout the series in which they picked up just five wickets. Thakur took four wickets while Shami took just one in the entire series. Jasprit Bumrah and Navdeep Saini went wicketless in the entire series. Yuzvendra Chahal, on his part, took six wickets in the two games that he played. The bowling average of India’s fast bowlers in the series reads 114.60 – this is their second-worst in an ODI series of three or more matches. New Zealand pacers combined to pick up 18 wickets at an average of 41.

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More importantly, this was the first time that Jasprit Bumrah failed to take even a single wicket in a bilateral-series. A wicketless series also meant that Bumrah was dethroned from his top position in the ICC ODI rankings for bowlers. He has dropped to number two with 719 rating points, while Trent Boult despite not playing the series topped the bowling charts with 727 points. The collective failure of the Indian paces in the series is the last of the takeaways for Team India in the ODI series. 

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