After a rude reality check in the T20 World Cup, India will aim to press the reset button for the 2022 edition under new captain Rohit Sharma and an illustrious head coach in Rahul Dravid, starting with the three-match series against New Zealand beginning in Jaipur tonight.
The duo in the next 11 months will underline the Men In Blue's template and philosophy in the shortest format after it became clear that some rejigging will be needed as a part of course correction.
Several key figures have been rested for this series. Kohli, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, Ravindra Jadeja, Hardik Pandya, and Shardul Thakur have been rested while the selectors have decided to reward the top performers from IPL 2021.
For New Zealand, Lockie Ferguson, who had suffered a calf injury at the start of the T20 World Cup in the UAE, has regained full fitness and is available for the series opener here on Wednesday.
All format players like skipper Kane Williamson and pacer Kyle Jamieson have been rested for the T20s, while the other players who are in both squads are Glenn Phillips, Daryl Mitchell, Mitchell Santer and Tim Southee, who will be the stand-in captain.
Ahead of the do-or-die virtual clash, let's know which players can make a difference in the team of Dream XI:
Dream11 line-up Rishabh Pant (C), Suryakumar Yadav, KL Rahul (VC), Rohit Sharma, Martin Guptill, Daryl Mitchell, Venkatesh Iyer, Deepak Chahar, Ish Sodhi, Trent Boult, Lockie Ferguson.
The venue has never hosted a T20I and the last international fixture was in 2013 when Australia were bullied by Rohit and Virat Kohli. The batters can expect a true wicket where stroke-making should be easy. In IPL 2019, in the seven matches at the venue, six were won by sides chasing. It won't be a surprise if the captain winning the toss decides to tilt the odds in his favour by chasing.
The weather forecast suggests no possibility of rain during the match but there will be a fair bit of cloud cover with the wind blowing from the east at 7 kmph. With the Indian winters setting in, the temperature during the day is expected to fall as low as 9 degrees celsius at night.
You can watch India vs New Zealand 1st T20 Live Online on Hotstar and TV Telecast on Star Sports Network.