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No Fear No Favour

India competing for its first T20I win against NZ in Nehra’s final international match

India have their task cut out against a team that has historically been a tough nut to crack in limited-overs cricket; the shorter the format, the more dangerous they are. The first T20 International between India and New Zealand in New Delhi is set to be veteran seamer Ashish Nehra’s last game in competitive cricket.

Ashish Nehra will play his 18-year international career on Wednesday, turning out one last time in India’s blue in the first T20 against New Zealand at his home ground.

Nehra requested the reservation of a whole box in the stadium for his friends and relatives on what will surely be an emotional day.  He is not an obvious choice for the playing XI, but it can be assumed that he will bowl, and possibly even bat since this will be his last match for India.

The left-arm-pace bowler was supposed to play in the upcoming World Cup 2019 hosted by England and Wales but suddenly he announced his retirement from all 3 formats of cricket leaving his fans in shock.

Well, Nehra holds an excellent bowling record in his 18-year international career. Have a look at it:

This talented bowler also possesses some great achievements in his cricket career. Here are some of them:

Wednesday’s match is also special for another reason. It is going to be the swansong of Ashish Nehra. The left-arm pacer’s skill and guile have been well-acknowledged, but his international career could not touch the heights that it deserved, with injuries cutting short his progress on numerous occasions.

Playing Nehra, 38, in his farewell match at his favorite Ferozeshah Kotla ground on Wednesday will mean tweaking the bowling line-up. Nehra was not given a game in the T20s against Australia, which led to his request for a farewell game on his home turf. That suggested he was seen more as a backup bowler.

This was perhaps the least that they could have done as a token of appreciation for Nehra, and though chief selector MSK Prasad said Nehra’s selection in the starting XI was a call for the team management to take Nehra, one feels, is a certainty at the Kotla.

New Zealand is currently the No. 1-ranked T20I team and will have to win this series to avoid its displacement from the top spot. On the other hand, India, ranked at No. 5, needs a 3-0 win to climb up to the second spot. India has always proved its dominance against New Zealand in all other formats but is yet to win a T20I match against the Kiwis.

The Black Caps played a T20I at Kotla against England in the World T20I tournament. This will be India’s first T20I match at the venue. All in all, a very exciting match in prospect.

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