'We were outplayed, fielding let us down'
New Delhi: New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson said his side were outplayed by India in the first T20 International here and rued the dropped catches by his fielders.
Hosts India thrashed New Zealand by 53 runs to take a 1-0 lead in the three-match series.
"The conditions are tough to prepare but given the experience within our side, we're certainly not using that as an excuse," Williamson said.
"Most of the time when you come here and play in the evening, there's dew as there is on a number of other grounds that guys have played at. Not going to sugarcoat it but we were below par and came up against what is a very good Indian side that played very well in all the areas," he added.
New Zealand dropped as many as three catches, including those offered by half centurions Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma early in their innings.
"Like I mentioned, we were outplayed in all the areas, fielding included, which is something we pride ourselves on and something we need to be much better at in Twenty20 cricket. That made the difference as we saw today that proved to be vital in a lot of ways. Guys went on to score big scores for their side in the Indian team and 200 on that surface was a very big total," Williamson said.
The Indian pace duo of Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah came in for praise and Williamson called them the most consistent bowlers in the world.
"They're both very good bowlers (Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar).Because they got off to a good start, we were on the backfoot.The surface was seaming around, offering a bit to the seamers, but we had to have a defensive approach to try and combat their aggression because they were putting us under pressure. I guess the other side of that coin is when the bowling side is on top and they're able to hit the wicket and use the surface like we saw Bumrah and the others in their bowling attack, which was very difficult," Williamson said at the press conference.
He said in Twenty20 cricket batsmen need to be aggressive to try and take on bowlers.
"We've seen Bhuvi and Bumrah throughout not just the one-dayers, but for a long time in the IPL. I've been fortunate to play with Bhuvi and against Bumrah and they re the most consistent bowlers in world cricket."
Williamson admitted his side was under pressure from the word go.
"We were under pressure pretty much from the word go.
Losing early wickets puts you on the backfoot and on the surface, it was stopping and turning. Trying to accelerate the run rate when you are under pressure is not an easy task. That was the nature of the batting innings," said the visiting skipper.
"We were never able to get momentum in our batting against them to try and get close to the total. Every time we attempted to increase the run rate, we lost wickets. A lot of it is our fault and then India bowled very well as well so the combination of that certainly did not allow us to get close to the total."