R Ashwin's 12-85 helps India beat New Zealand and take 1-0 lead

India registered a convincing victory over New Zealand inside four days by dismissing the visitors for 164 to win by an innings and 115 runs at the Rajiv Gandhi International Cricket Stadium here yesterday.

Off-spinner, Ravichandran Ashwin did the star act with 6-54 in the second essay, after his first innings figure of 6-31, to help India take 1-0 lead in the Two-Test series.

Ravichandran Ashwin (left) is congratulated by teammate Suresh Raina on Day Four of the first Test against New Zealand. PIC/AFP

In reply to India’s 438, New Zealand were skittled out for 159 in the first innings and were forced to follow on.

Ashwin (12-85) wasn’t elated with the performance, rather he wanted take it as the launching pad for the season. “We had gone through rough time, which every one goes through.

I am happy to get wickets, but not exited because this is just the beginning of a season. New Zealand can come as a stiff challenge. The wicket played well. It was good for the batsmen and bowlers as well. Our closing catchers have also done well,” the offie said.

Asked about breaking Srinivas Venkataraghavan’s 12-152 record against New Zealand (most successful Indian bowlers against New Zealand), Ashwin said: “While going out for post-match presentation, I saw it on the television and immediately told S Badrinath look who is at No 2 (as Venkataraghavan is respected in Chennai),” Ashwin said.

New Zealand captain Ross Taylor rued about the Decision Review System. “We are unhappy with those decisions, but will have to accept as the DRS is not being used. Seven decisions went against us…7-0 looks like a hockey score,” Taylor said. 

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