On Wednesday, India faced an 80-run loss against the Black Caps in the opening T20I at the Wellington Regional Stadium in Wellington. Despite the loss, Mahendra Singh Dhoni earned himself an undesired record.
While chasing an enormous target of 220 runs, Indian batsmen failed to live up to the expectations and remained 80 runs short of the target. MS Dhoni was the top-scorer for Men in Blue with 39 runs off 31 balls. With a defeat in the first T20I against Kiwis, India have now lost all T20I games in which Dhoni has top-scored.
Instances when MS Dhoni top-scored in T20Is for India:
- 48* v Aus, Sydney, 2012 (Lost by 31 runs)
- 38 v Eng, Mumbai WS, 2012 (Lost by six wickets)
- 30 v NZ, Nagpur, 2016 (Lost by 47 runs)
- 36*v Eng, Kanpur, 2017 (Lost by seven wickets)
- 39 v NZ, W’ton, 2019 (Lost by 80 runs)
Batting first, New Zealand posted a staggering total of 219 runs on the board in 20 overs with the help of a brilliant knock from opener Tim Seifert, who scored a quickfire 84 off 43 deliveries. He smashed 6-sixes and 7-fours during his innings. He was well supported by Colin Munro (34) and skipper Kane Williamson (34). A late 7-ball 20 cameo from Scott Kuggelejin ensure the hosts comfortably crossed the 200-run mark.
In reply, India lost an early wicket as skipper Rohit Sharma (1) was caught by Lockie Ferguson, bowled by Tim Southee. After that, Shikhar Dhawan (29) and Vijay Shankar (27) posted a 33-run stand for the second wicket but post the duo’s departure, the Indian middle-order crumbled under pressure with the likes of Rishabh Pant (4), Dinesh Karthik (5) and Hardik Pandya (4) all failing to deliver.
After 11 overs, India were at 77 with the loss of 6 wickets which left Dhoni and Krunal Pandya with a monumental task of getting India back in the game. The duo eventually failed to get India over the line as the visitors fell short by 80 runs. Dhoni, with his 39-run knock, completed his 1500 runs in T20Is but it was another instance when India lost the game he top-scored for the team in a T20I game.
The second T20I between India and New Zealand will take place at Eden Park in Auckland. The Men in Blue will look to bounce back in the second T20I to be played on Friday.