Finally, the real New Zealand team arrived to the party and played a brand of cricket that outplayed India in the first T20I. The visitors have got a reality check and with the series on the line, they have a daunting task of overcoming New Zealand's prowess in the second T20I.
The first game has ensured that this T20I series will witness some intense contest and for the second game, these three players could arguably be the game changers.
After warming the benches in the ODI series, Tim Southee unleashed himself in the first T20I and such was his wrath that India were blown away. Southee gave just 17 runs in his four overs when the asking rate was above 11 and this was a decisive factor in New Zealand's win.
At the same time he picked crucial wickets with the new ball and the same is expected from him in the second game. It will be interesting to see how India approaches Southee's swing. Will they see him off or will they counter-attack?
In the absence of Virat Kohli, Rohit is India's talisman and with the series on the line, Team India needs him to up the ante.
The opening batsman must score a big knock if India wants to stay alive in this series and the key factor will be how he negates the new ball.
The equation is simple. If Bhuvneshwar bowls well, India's bowling report-card looks good. In the first game, he failed to give a break-through with new ball and in the death overs, failed to prevent big shots. The result? India had to chase 220 runs.
New Zealand's opening pair has made it clear that they are going for the kill and hence Bhuvi needs to be at his best to control them in the powerplay. However his death bowling will be more important for India as he is the most experienced bowler in India's squad.