The first T20I of the three-match series between New Zealand and India ended in a comfortable 21-run victory for the Kiwis. Opener Devon Conway and Daryl Mitchell were the stars of the show for New Zealand, with Conway making a quickfire 35-ball 52 and Mitchell an unbeaten 30-ball 59.
For India, Washington Sundar was the pick of the bowlers, taking 2/22 from his four overs. Kuldeep Yadav, Shivam Mavi, and Arshdeep Singh also took a wicket each but were unable to stop the New Zealand batsmen from scoring freely.
New Zealand won the toss and elected to bat first. The Indian bowlers struggled to find their line and length at the start, allowing New Zealand to get off to a flying start. Finn Allen looked in good touch, hitting consecutive boundaries off Hardik Pandya, while Conway also punished a widish ball from Arshdeep.
However, Washington Sundar got a lot of purchase from the wicket and soon saw the back of Allen and Mark Chapman in the space of five deliveries to reduce New Zealand to 43/2. Conway, however, kept the runs flowing with two fours and a six off Umran Malik, who conceded 16 runs in his only over. Kuldeep then dismissed Glenn Phillips with a googly, but Mitchell joined Conway and the pair stitched a partnership.
After Conway was dismissed, Mitchell went into overdrive, hitting Hardik Pandya for 16 runs and then milking 27 runs off Arshdeep in the last over. New Zealand finished with a slightly above-par total of 179/5.
In reply, India got off to a disastrous start, losing Ishan Kishan, Rahul Tripathi, and Shubman Gill in quick succession. Suryakumar Yadav and Hardik Pandya did raise hopes of a comeback with a partnership, but Suryakumar was dismissed in the 12th over, chipping the ball straight to Allen at long-on. Hardik followed soon after, offering a return catch to Bracewell.
Washington Sundar cracked some hefty blows while facing Duffy and Lockie Ferguson but he had too much to do. Sundar scored a quickfire 28-ball 50 but was dismissed in the last over by Ferguson. In the end, India fell short of their target, finishing 158/8.