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Performance Analysis of the Indian players in the series against NZ



Number_one_Best_Greatest_cricketIndia had the Kiwis tormented with a 3-0 whitewash. Moreover, this series victory shot India back to the top of the Test rankings. As Kohli received the Test mace from the legendary Sunil Gavaskar, you could witness the baton of excellence being passed. In just a couple of years like his predecessor MS Dhoni, he has taken the big strides as a leader.

The real essence of a captain is to take bold decisions in the field and back his teammates to achieve the goal. Kohli has shown great character when it comes to guiding the team in pressure situations. A captain is incomplete without his team and the way players like Ashwin, Pujara, Jadeja, Rohit and others have contributed to the team's cause during different stages is worth lauding. Considering the vital aspects, no surprise that India has been unbeaten in the last 13 Tests spanning more than a year.  

If someone has made an actual difference and donned his skills as a test batsman in this series, it's Rohit Sharma. For a while, he has struggled to get through a purple patch in the white kit. With a splendid average of 79.33, Rohit had three sensational half centuries to his name. Moreover, it was the pace at which he scored the runs that restored the faith shown by the captain to resist with him.

Murali Vijay began the tour with ravishing fifties but couldn't contemplate the form in the next two tests. He had different partners in each game, all facing a spate of injuries. Gambhir excelled in his comeback game with a brisk half century, even though he had a shoulder injury. His knock denoted that he was here to stay.

But the main architect of the top order was Pujara who ended up as the highest run scorer in the series. Every time the openers failed to make vital contributions, he managed to hang in and carve out remarkable knocks. He was rock solid in his approach and the way he shifted gears in the last test after reaching fifty was worth applauding. His astounding tally of 373 runs was an eloquent answer to all his critics.

Kohli and Rahane, often regarded as the backbone of the Indian batting weren't quite upto their stature in the first two tests. They got compelling starts but couldn't quite get going for a reasonable time. 'Cometh the hour, cometh the man', the batting duo doomed the Kiwi bowlers with a record breaking 365 runs partnership for the 4th wicket in the last test. Both the batsmen were on a roll as they literally toyed with the Kiwi bowlers.

Kohli who had been traversing through a lean patch, displayed his mettle in a dapper way with a glorious knock of 211, eclipsing his previous best in the recent tour of West Indies. Rahane on the other hand, played a spectacular innings of 188. While he struggled in the initial phase, once he got set, he dominated the Kiwi attack. The partnership played a supreme part to compel India to go for a whitewash.

If the batting lineup set the bar for India, it was the way, Indian spinners bowled on these tracks that deserves special mention. Ravichandran Ashwin continued his golden run with the ball as he grabbed 27 wickets throughout the series. His significance to the Indian bowling has been equal to that of Kohli to the Indian batting in the recent past. He went on to win his 4th consecutive man of the series on the trot.

Jadeja too had the scurrying pace in his arm to make life difficult for the Kiwi batsmen. He took 14 wickets in the series including a man of the match award in the first test for a splendid show. He applied the brakes to the Kiwi innings at numerable occasions. He complemented Ashwin well as they together bowled in tandem to contain the visitors in a quick interval.

The pacers, Shami and Yadav had their moments in the series and rose to the occasion when the team counted on them. Bhuvneshwar Kumar also got a five wicket haul in the second test. Overall, the fast bowlers had a pretty decent series. Saha also chipped in with some noteworthy contributions with the bat along with some marvellous piece of work behind the stumps.

After being on the back foot during the very first Test, the intent and determination shown by the Indian players to stage a complete turnaround was worth appreciating. The way they decimated the Kiwis proved what a potential threat this Indian side is, in the cricketing world at the moment. The budding crop of youngsters along with the experience of veteran Kumble in the dressing room has created an enigma and made India more formidable than ever.

If India would've one concern heading on to the England series, it would be the fitness levels. Many key players like KL Rahul, Dhawan, Bhuvneshwar and even Gambhir suffered injuries. The decision to rest Ashwin, Jadeja and Shami from the ODIs seems to be a masterstroke by the selectors with India in midst of a long season. With the fortitude demonstrated by Kohli and Co, the principle to make winning a habit is not far behind. Who knows, the unbeaten streak might well remain unbeaten by the end of the season.


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