Opener Tim Seifert's 43-ball 84 helped New Zealand thump India by 80 runs in Wednesday's first Twenty20 worldwide to hand the tourists their heaviest defeat in the format. He finished with seven fours and six sixes in an innings which likely secured his place as the backup keeper in New Zealand's squad for the upcoming World Cup. MS Dhoni top-scored for India with 39 runs off 31 balls while no other batsman managing to impress much with the willow. As far as the New Zealand bowling was concerned, it was equally impressive as they bowled out India for 139 runs to record a massive victory. The home team was earlier routed 4-1 in the five-match One-day worldwide series.
Seifert, whose previous best innings in eight internationals was an unbeaten 14 on debut, gave New Zealand a flying start.
Seifert, who was adjudged the "Man of the Match" for his 43-ball 84, said he was happy to live up to the expectations after his selection in the team.
After Munro perished for 34, Seifert and skipper Williamson added another 48 runs before cameos by Ross Taylor and Scott Kuggeleijn took New Zealand past the 200 mark.
"It was a great way to start the series".
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"We were outplayed in all three departments", India captain Rohit Sharma said.
New Zealand's Ish Sodhi (R) with teammates Tim Seifert (C) and Daryl Mitchell (L) celebrate their win in the first Twenty20 cricket match between New Zealand and India in Wellington on 6 February 2019.
Tim Southee (3-17) was the pick of the New Zealand bowlers while Lockie Ferguson (2-22) took the key wicket of Shikhar Dhawan (29), just as the India opener was beginning to fire.
"Fantastic performance all around, everyone rose and it was one of those complete performances that you search for. Seifert was excellent", Williamson said. "We had runs on the board, but bowling and fielding were outstanding".
India are now placed third in the table after winning the three-match away series against New Zealand 2-1 recently.