It was a disappointing day for Team India on Wednesday, as they crushed to a 80-run loss against New Zealand in the first T20I. The Men in Blue came into this fixture in much confidence, but were blown away by the hosts who dominated proceedings right from the off.
Though, the fixture proved to be a landmark day for two Indian players, despite them ending up on the losing side.
The Pandya brothers - Hardik and Krunal - became the just the third Indian pair of brothers to play together in a match in the national colors. While the two have been in the Indian set up since long, never had they before in the past played together for the Indian team. They follow the footsteps of Amartnath brothers - Mohinder and Surinder - and Pathan brothers - Irfan and Yusuf.
In their first outing together, it was the less experienced Krunal who fared better against the much experienced Hardik. The elder Pandya (Krunal) ended up with 1 for 37 in his four overs with the ball, and with the bat, he made a fighting but valiant 20. Hardik, on the other hand, struggled with the ball, taking 2 for 51 in his four overs. He didn't fare any better with the bat, scoring just four runs.
Overall, it was a day to forget for India, who have otherwise been sublime in their tour of New Zealand. Stand-in skipper Rohit Sharma won the toss and elected to field first. The hosts made him pay for his decision with a brilliant batting display.
The star of the show for the Kiwis was opener Tim Seifert, who scored a brilliant 43-ball 84. The others who played their part were Colin Munro (34 of 20) and skipper Kane Williamson (34 of 22) as they ended up with 219 for 6 in their 20 overs.
In reply, India were never in the game, and lost wickest in regular intervals. Rohit was gone early, and despite a promising partnership between Shikhar Dhawan and Vijay Shankar, New Zealand were always on top.
After the dismissal of Dhawan and Shankar, India's middle-orde crumbled. Despite the best efforts of MS Dhoni (39 of 31), the visitors lost the match by 80 runs, their worst ever defeat in this format.