As India prepares to take on New Zealand in the third T20I which will also be the series decider in Thiruvananthapuram, a key pattern seems to be emerging from the series.
The template of this series seems to be the team that has batted first has batted big courtesy big opening stands.
In Delhi, Rohit Sharma & Shikhar Dhawan put on a monumental 158-run stand for the first wicket: In Rajkot, Martin Guptill & Colin Munro put on 105-runs for the first wicket.
As a result, this is the first ever bilateral T20I series which has seen multiple 100+ opening stands for the first wicket in the first innings!
Furthermore, a few more benchmarks have been set: -
The runs put on in the first innings by the opening pair (263) is the most in any bilateral T20I series.
The average opening partnership in the first innings (131.50) is also the highest in any bilateral T20I series.
The average partnership duration (82.5 balls) is also the longest in any bilateral T20I series.
• A look at just how far ahead the average opening partnership is ahead of the rest 4:
To clinch the series, India have to display a better show in both batting and bowling department while New Zealand would like to continue with the same momentum.
India, comprehensive beat the visitors in the first match at the Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium in Delhi. In the second match, New Zealand bounced back in style and defeated India by 40 runs.
Squads: India: Virat Kohli (Captain), Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Lokesh Rahul, Manish Pandey, Shreyas Iyer, Dinesh Karthik, MS Dhoni (WK), Hardik Pandya, Axar Patel, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Siraj.
New Zealand: Kane Williamson (c), Mitchell Santner, Ish Sodhi, Tim Southee, Ross Taylor, Trent Boult, Tom Bruce, Colin de Grandhomme, Martin Guptill, Matt Henry, Tom Latham, Henry Nicholls, Adam Milne, Colin Munro, Glenn Phillips (wk).
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