New Zealand spinner Mitchell Santner credited the bowlers for India's comfortable six-wicket win in the second ODI that helped the hosts level the three-match ODI series 1-1. Santner said losing three early wickets was not the ideal start for New Zealand, who batted first and could manage only 230 for nine. In a lethal spell of bowling upfront, Jasprit Bumrah and Bhuvneshwar Kumar tormented the New Zealand batsmen, reducing the visitors to 27 for three after just seven overs. New Zealand failed to recover from their poor start, handing India the initiative.
Bhuvneshwar ended the match with figures of three for 45 while Bumrah took two wickets, giving away just 38 runs in his 10 overs.
"Obviously it's a little bit disappointing. I think credit has to go to India the way they bowled in the start and put us under pressure," Santner said in the post-match press conference.
"Losing the first three in the first 10 overs is not ideal if you're batting first."
New Zealand would have dreamed of a positive result when they removed Rohit Sharma (7) early but Shikhar Dhawan hit a gritty 68 to put India well on their course. Dinesh Karthik hit an unbeaten 64 to add the finishing touches as India ran out comfortable winners.
"We knew that 230 was a little under-par and then the way they came out and batted I guess took the game away from us. Shikhar (Dhawan) played pretty well and finished off with (Dinesh) Karthik in the end," said Santner.
Santner said he was hopeful that the visitors could wrap up the series in Kanpur where the decider will be played on October 29.
"It's a bit disappointing with the loss tonight but we've learnt our part going to Kanpur. We're hoping to take the series 2-1," he said.
"Last year we didn't put in a great performance to lose it 3-2 but I guess we can hit the ball rolling at Kanpur and then hopefully take the series 2-1."
Santner, who also played in last year's series, conceded that Indian batsmen played spin very well.
"They're very good players of spin and the Indian players have grown up playing a lot of spin so it makes your job a lot tougher," he said.
"I think my job is to be quite economical and try taking wickets through the middle and if I can take a few that helps but I guess today (last night) they chased their total pretty well."
(With PTI Inputs)