India Vs NZ 2nd Test: India Win By 372 Runs, Clinch Series 1-0

India

India captured a memorable victory against New Zealand in the second test match at the Wankhede Ground in Mumbai on Monday morning. India dominated the hapless Kiwis from the outset of the match and had set a target of 540 for the visitors to chase. New Zealand capitulated on the morning of Day 4 and finished their second innings with just 167 runs on the scoreboard. With the end of the test match in Mumbai, India has sealed back-to-back series wins against the Kiwis, the first being a 3-match T20 series, and now the 2-match Test series. 

Coach Rahul Dravid Happy With Depth In Squad

Team India head coach Rahul Dravid was all praise for the new band of players in his squad. He said, “Good to finish the Test series on a winning note. Came very close in Kanpur, but couldn’t take that last wicket. Credit to the team, they have pulled themselves back from tough situations and were a bit disappointed at not finishing it off in Kanpur. Good to see the boys step up and take opportunities, we were missing a few seniors, but the youngsters have taken their chances. Jayant (Yadav) found it difficult yesterday but came up well this morning. A lot of these guys don’t get the opportunity to play a lot (of Test cricket), but it’s nice to see them do well, especially the likes of Shreyas Iyer, Mayank Agarwal, Axar Patel and Jayant. That gives us a lot of choices opening up when the seniors do return.”

Dravid added, “We didn’t need to think about it (about a possible declaration), we had a lot of time and we knew we could bowl them out. Also, a lot of youngsters needed the chance to bat in challenging conditions- to play on red soil wickets, with this kind of bounce, it’ll only help them grow as players, especially when they travel and play in different conditions. We knew we had enough time to bowl them out once again. It’s a good situation to be in (on selection), we had some injuries in the lead-up to this game, that’s something that will challenge us. The boys are playing a lot of cricket, in different formats, and we need to ensure the workload on them. But everyone is challenging for places, that’s good to see with the amount of cricket coming up. But it is a good headache to have.”

Ravi Ashwin And Mayank Agarwal Take Top Awards

Veteran spinner Ravi Ashwin was once again adjudged the player-of-the-tournament. A visibly beaming Ashwin said, “I think I’ve got 10 Man of the Series awards now. I enjoyed Wankhede honestly, and every day there was something new, and I could challenge both edges. It was a wonderful performance by Ajaz. It doesn’t spin all the time in Wankhede, and he used the seam and put the ball in the right places, and there was a bit of destiny involved in his 10-for too. I would like to go to South Africa and win a series there, we haven’t done that before, and hopefully, we can do it this time.”

Opening batsman won the player-of-the-match award for his 150 and 62 in the first and second innings, respectively. He showed a lot of maturity in the opening slot in the absence of regular partner KL Rahul.

Skipper Kohli Ready For The Next Challenge

A beaming Kohli spoke to the reporters at the post-match presentation ceremony and had this to say- “To come back with a win again, it’s a great feeling and clinical performance. You want individuals to step up. The first Test was good, and it was a clinical performance here. We discussed the performance and the opposition played out a good draw. The bowlers tried all their best, but the Kiwi batsmen stuck it out really well in Kanpur. Here there was more bounce and the fast bowlers got assistance as well, so it gave us a better chance to win the Test match.”

On being asked about the direction in which Team India is going, Kohli added, “The mindset is the same to take Indian cricket forward, even with the new management. It’s important to keep the standards of Indian cricket and make sure it’s always growing. South Africa is a good challenge. We built it up in England and South Africa last time, and Australia was an accumulation of all that experience. South Africa is a tough challenge and a win that we want to achieve as a team. Hopefully, we can play in South Africa the way we know we can play, and win the series.”