Ranchi: India captain Hardik Pandya won the toss and elected to bowl first against New Zealand in the first T20I of the three-match series at the JSCA International Stadium in Ranchi, here on Friday.
“Looks like a very good track. The reason behind the decision to bowl first is that the ground is going to get quite wet, I can see some dew now itself. Just go out there and play the best cricket we know.”
“It’s a young side, everyone’s ready to go. We will focus on playing good cricket. Playing the ODIs before T20Is makes it easy to pass on. For a lot of them it is an experience just being in the team. Yuzi (Yuzvendra Chahal), Mukesh (Kumar), Jitesh (Sharma) and Prithvi (Shaw) miss out,” Hardik said at the toss.
On the other hand, left-arm spin all-rounder Mitchell Santner is taking over the New Zealand captaincy from Tom Latham in T20Is as visitors search for their first win on the tour after being beaten 3-0 in the ODI series.
“There’s no experience like playing India at their home. Would be a challenge for some of the new guys. It would have been nice to bowl first but we will try to put some runs on the board. Tom Latham and Henry Nicholls are done. Ish Sodhi is back in, and Mark Chapman as well,” said Santner.
In the pitch report, it was noted by commentators Ajit Agarkar and Danny Morrison that the track in Ranchi is hard with an even covering of the grass and opined that the ball could skid on, with a little bit of help with the new ball for the bowlers.
India: Shubman Gill, Ishan Kishan (wicketkeeper), Rahul Tripathi, Suryakumar Yadav, Hardik Pandya (captain), Deepak Hooda, Washington Sundar, Shivam Mavi, Kuldeep Yadav, Umran Malik and Arshdeep Singh
New Zealand: Finn Allen, Devon Conway (wicketkeeper), Mark Chapman, Daryl Mitchell, Glenn Phillips, Mitchell Santner (captain), Michael Bracewell, Jacob Duffy, Ish Sodhi, Lockie Ferguson and Blair Tickner.