Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni has cited lack of application and partnerships as the reasons behind his side's shocking 47-run loss to a spirited New Zealand in the opening group match of the World Twenty20 in Nagpur.
Chasing a modest target of 126, Indian batsmen failed collectively as a unit against New Zealand's spinners and were bundled out for just 79 runs in 18.1 overs, their lowest ever T20 score on home soil.
"There were quite a few soft dismissals and there was no partnership at all. We all knew that the wicket was slightly on the slower side. It was the batting department that could have done better. We kept losing wickets at every alternate over.
"Once the top order gets out, it becomes more difficult for the batsmen to come in to score runs. It is important to get a partnership going at that stage so that it gives that calmness in the dressing room and the batsmen who are coming afterwards. It was to some extent a lack of application," Dhoni was quoted as saying by bcci.tv.
The 34-year-old captain, however, backed his side to bounce back from the defeat and expressed hope that his men will come up with their best performance in the upcoming matches of the tournament.
"What I always tell the boys is the kind of cricket you are playing, what is the mistake that you have committed in the game rather than thinking that you have been bundled out for just 80 or 90 runs. What is important is how we turn around and how we come back strong.
"This team has done it plenty of times. The team has shown the character of coming back after a bad defeat. I don't think I will have to work too hard on regrouping the boys.
"In a way this loss is good for the team that we will also realise how to bat under such situations. The wickets will be different everywhere and when we go to Kolkata, maybe the wicket there will also be different. Hopefully this loss will bring the best out of us," Dhoni added.
This was New Zealand's fifth victory over India in their six T20 internationals against India, while the other match was rained off.
Meanwhile, India will next take on fierce rivals Pakistan in a must-win clash on Saturday at Eden Gardens in Kolkata.