India vs New Zealand: Virat Kohli looks to enter elite club of Indian captains
India and New Zealand are set to lock horns in a two-match Test series and Virat Kohli will look to enter an elite club that comprises only two legendary Indian captains.
If World No. 1 India defeat Kiwis in the Test series, Kohli will become only the third Indian captain to win a red-ball series in New Zealand.
Out of India's nine Test series in New Zealand, the Indians have clinched only two series victories that came under MAK Pataudi and MS Dhoni. India's maiden Test series in New Zealand happened under the captaincy of Pataudi in 1968, which India won 3-1. Team India then had to wait for 41 long years before they won another away Test series against the BlackCaps.
Dhoni-led India defeated New Zealand 1-0 in the three-match Test series during India's 2009 tour. India won the opening Test in Hamilton by 10 wickets before the next two matches in Napier and Wellington ended in a draw.
Kohli, who had led India to 33 victories in 53 Tests, became the first Asian captain to win a Test series Down Under and once again, the Indian icon has a chance to script yet another history.
The Indian team last lost a Test series was back in 2018 when they suffered a 4-1 drubbing in England. Ever since then, they have triumphed in five straight Test series that have come against the likes of West Indies (home and away), Australia (away), South Africa (home) and Bangladesh (home). While they will aim to maintain their winning streak in the longest format, Kane Williamson and Co will look to return to winning ways after their recent thrashing in Australia.
The opening match of the Test series between India and New Zealand will begin on Friday at Wellington's Basin Reserve and the second match will be played from Feb. 29 at Christchurch's Hagley Oval.