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T20 World Cup: India just haven't got things quite right, says ex-cricketer McMillan

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Auckland, Nov 1 (IANS) Former New Zealand cricketer Craig McMillan said that India haven’t got things quite right in the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup. He added that the Indian cricketers had a perfect run ahead of the tournament as they featured in the second half of IPL in the UAE. India was consigned to an eight-wicket thrashing by New Zealand in their second match of Group 2 in Dubai on Sunday.

“The dynamics of the changing room would be fascinating to be a part of and see how it functions because of very strong personalities. They will be disappointed. I mean, there’s huge expectations on India as we know whenever they go to a World Cup and they haven’t delivered since 2011 back home (since 2013 Champions Trophy). I think they have got the players we saw at the IPL. They had the perfect run into this T20 World Cup in terms of the IPL and playing a lot of T20 cricket. But they just haven’t quite got things right,” McMillan said on Mornings with Ian Smith show on SENZ Radio on Monday.

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Pushed into batting first, India were restricted to a paltry 110/7 in 20 overs. In reply, New Zealand chased down the target with 33 balls to spare. With the ball, Trent Boult (3/20), Ish Sodhi (2/17), and Mitchell Santner (0/15) were mighty effective.

Talking about the overall performance of the Blackcaps, McMillan remarked, “It was a very polished performance from New Zealand. It was a match which was effectively a sudden-death quarter-final for both sides. But New Zealand showed more discipline and looked more desperate than what India did, which was surprising. But all in all, I just thought it was actually the performance I was expecting from New Zealand in the first match against Pakistan. They weren’t too far off from that performance. But they obviously took stock of what they needed to improve and what area that they needed just to work on a little bit. I thought it was a very clinical all-round performance.”

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McMillan, who was New Zealand’s batting coach from 2014 to 2019, further elaborated on how New Zealand nailed their disciplined bowling plans against India. “I just thought it was the discipline and the bowling was excellent. I liked the fact that we used Southee and Boult for two overs each in the Power-play. The thing I liked was the way Trent Boult talked about bowling to Rohit Sharma and the lbw on his front pad because it’s how Sharma got out against Pakistan if you remember left-arm swing bowler Shaheen Afridi got him out lbw.”

“And then, first ball Boult bowled to Sharma, wasn’t trying to get him out lbw on that front pad. It was a short, fast bouncer. So, that was on the mark as he top-edged it because he was a little bit like not sure what was coming. Unfortunately, it was dropped by Adam Milne at fine-leg but it did not cost New Zealand too much. But it showed me that they had done the homework, they were smart with their bowling plans, and were really disciplined about how they went about it. There were only two wides in the New Zealand bowling performance, so it was an excellent performance.”

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–IANS

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