Having lost the first Test by ten wickets in just over three days at the Basin Reserve in Wellington, Virat Kohli and Co went down in less than three days at the Hagley Oval in Christchurch.
India are the No 1-ranked side in the world in the longest format and still remain at the top of the ICC World Test championship points table.
Going into the series, India didn’t boast of a great record in Test cricket in New Zealand. But they were still expected to put up a fight since they had shown top form in Tests at home and the Kiwis had suffered a heavy defeat in their last Test series in Australia.
However, it is fair to say that the two-match series was one-sided for the most part. India failed to fire as a batting unit on all four occasions in the series, and their bowlers struggled to contain the NZ batsmen when it was needed most.
Here’s a look at how the Indian players fared in the two-Test series in New Zealand:
Ahead of the series, the biggest concern for India, in terms of their batting, was the relatively inexperienced opening pair of Prithvi Shaw and Mayank Agarwal. While both the right-handers managed to score a fifty each in the series, neither could make any real impact. Agarwal, though, finished with the most runs and the highest average for his team.
India batted four times in the series and none of their batsmen could manage to score even one century. The bulk of the blame for that has to go to their middle order, which had no dearth of experience. Cheteshwar Pujara, skipper Kohli and his deputy Ajinkya Rahane failed to lead the way for their side and that was, perhaps, the biggest reason why India hardly competed in the series.
Kohli finished the series with fewer runs than even Mohammed Shami. Yes, that’s a fact.
India's batting stats in the two Tests in NZ
Although Ishant Sharma was returning from an injury, most people would have expected India’s fast bowling unit to excel in New Zealand’s pace-friendly conditions. But that wasn’t really how things panned out. Sharma, who bagged the only five-wicket haul in the series for India, had the best average among the six bowlers that Kohli used. But he only bowled in one innings. The likes of Jasprit Bumrah and Shami – who bowled in four and three innings respectively – didn’t return with impressive averages or strike-rates.
Of course, the big reason for India being swept away in the series has to be their dismal batting, but the bowling unit, which has done well in overseas conditions in the past, surely didn’t do enough either.
India's bowling stats in the two Tests in NZ
All stats courtesy ESPNcricinfo
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