An inspired bowling and fielding performance helped New Zealand win the opening one-dayer in Napier despite Virat Kohli's 123. (Getty Images)
Napier: Mitchell McClenaghan (4 for 68) starred with the ball with Corey Anderson clicking with both bat and ball as New Zealand defeated India by 24 runs here on Sunday to go 1-0 up in the five-match ODI series.
Chasing 293 to win, Virat Kohli (123) scored his 18th one-day century supported well by MS Dhoni (40) but the rest of Indian batsmen failed as the Kiwis bowled India out for 268 with eight balls to spare.
Pacer McClenaghan gave India early blow by dismissing Rohit Sharma cheaply. Rohit had a tough time negotiating the New Zealand pacers and faced 23 deliveries for his three runs. Kohli walked in and looked in good touch instantly as he along with Shikhar Dhawan steadied India's chase with their 58-run stand. But Dhawan soon lost his concentration as he mistimed a pull shot and gave away a simple catch to Ross Taylor off Anderson.
Both Ajinkya Rahane (7) and Suresh Raina (18) failed to make a real contribution and the visitors found themselves in a spot of bother at 129 for 4 in 28.2 overs. Kohli and Dhoni combined well and notched a 95-run stand for the fifth wicket to put India on top. In the process, Kohli flicked with power and drove with authority as he made his way to yet another ODI century. However, McClenaghan picked up Dhoni and Ravindra Jadeja (0) in one over to peg back India's chase.
Kohli hit a few lusty blows to keep India's hopes alive but his fall in the 45th over ended all chances of an Indian win. R Ashwin (12) and Mohammad Shami(7 not out) managed to take India slightly close but it was never enough.
Earlier, New Zealand batting first lost openers Martin Guptill (8) and Jesse Ryder (18) cheaply. Anderson hit 68 off 40 balls, his first ODI half-century after Kane Williamson and Taylor put on 121 runs for the third wicket at the McLean Park to help New Zealand post a challenging total of 292 for 7 on the board.
Meanwhile, Taylor completed 4000 ODI runs in 121 innings, at the personal score of 15 not out, becoming the second-quickest Kiwi batsman after Nathan Astle (120 innings) to do so. Taylor scored 55 runs off 82 balls, with just the one boundary, and became the Indian skipper's 300th ODI victim.
Dhoni is the first Indian wicketkeeper to achieve this milestone, in 239 matches, and the fourth overall after Australia's Adam Gilchrist (472 dismissals in 287 matches).
Shami was the most successful bowler for the visitors, finishing with 4 for 55 from nine overs. Bhuvneshwar Kumar (1 for 38), Ishant Sharma (1 for 72) and Jadeja (1 for 61) were the other wicket-takers.