New Zealand opener Martin Guptill on Friday surpassed Indian star Virat Kohli to become the leading run-getter in T20 Internationals. Guptill surpassed Kohli during the second T20 match of the three-match series. India’s Test and ODI captain, Kohli has been rested for the series.
Guptill has 3248 runs to his name compared to Kohli’s 3227. Guptill averages a little over 30 while Kohli is way ahead of him on that front with an average of 52. Rohit Sharma is third in the leading run-getters’ standings with more than 3000 runs.
Guptill made 31 off 15 balls before being caught by wicketkeeper Rishabh Pant off Deepak Chahar. In a must-win match for the Kiwis, who are trailing 0-1 in the three-match series, Guptill and Daryl Mitchell (31 off 28 balls) took the Indian pacers to the cleaners after being put into bat.
Cruising at 64 for one in the powerplay, the Kiwis suddenly hit a roadblock in the crucial middle overs and managed just 64 runs from 7 to 16 overs with Ashwin (1/19) and Axar (1/26) dominating the New Zealand batters in the dew-laden condition.
The duo’s remarkable effort in the middle gave the pace attack some respite and newcomer Harshal Patel, who made his T20I debut four days shy of his 31st birthday, returned with impressive figures of 2/25 as New Zealand managed 153/6 in 20 overs.
Chasing a modest 154 under heavy dew condition, the Indian captain and vice-captain started off in contrasting styles en route to their respective half-centuries. Quiet at start, Rohit stepped up in the middle overs smashing five sixes and one four en route to his 36-ball 55.
Rahul started off in a brisk fashion, and top-scored with 65 from 49 balls with two sixes and six fours in an 117-run opening stand that virtually sealed the chase. The Indian skipper is now involved in the most century-plus stands (13), overtaking 12 by Babar Azam and Martin Guptill.
The third and final T20I is scheduled to be played at the iconic Eden Gardens in Kolkata on Sunday.