Trent Boult led an outstanding bowling assault as New Zealand crushed India by eight wickets on Sunday, leaving Virat Kohli’s side with a tough fight to reach the semi-finals.
Boult and leg-spinner Ish Sodhi combined for five wickets to hold India to 110 for seven after being called to bat first in the Super 12 match in Dubai.
The loss to New Zealand has severely harmed India’s prospects of reaching the semifinals of the T20 World Cup 2021, but the Men in Blue still have a chance to advance to the next stage of the premier event.
“I don’t think we were brave enough with bat or ball. We didn’t have much to defend but we weren’t brave when we walked out to field,” Kohli said.
“When you play for the Indian cricket team you have a lot of expectations – not just from fans, but players as well. So there’s always going to be more pressure with our games and we’ve embraced it over the years. Everyone who plays for India has to embrace it. And when you cope together as a team you overcome it and we haven’t done it these two games. Just because you’re the Indian team and there are expectations doesn’t mean you start playing differently. I think we’re fine, there’s a lot of cricket left to play,” Kohli added.
How can India still qualify?
Despite finishing second-last in their group, Team India has a chance to advance to the semi-finals. Virat Kohli’s squad must win the next three group games against Afghanistan, Namibia, and Scotland.
However, this alone will not suffice for India, as they will also need the other outcomes and the net run rate calculation to favor them. The Men in Blue require New Zealand to lose at least two of their remaining three group games, and Namibia to lose any two of their remaining matches.
In addition, Kohli’s team will need to win their remaining matches, particularly against Afghanistan, by a large margin in order to improve their dismal net run rate in the event of a tie for second place.
India’s remaining fixtures:
India v Afghanistan, Abu Dhabi – Wednesday 3 November
India v Scotland, Dubai – Friday 5 November
India v Namibia, Dubai – Monday 8 November