IND vs NZ 3rd T20I: India seals close 6-run victory; wins series 2-1

Shubhanshu Sharma
Published on: 7 Nov 2017 6:06 PM GMT
IND vs NZ 3rd T20I: India seals close 6-run victory; wins series 2-1

Thiruvananthapuram: International Cricket returned to Trivandrum after so many years and brought a big reason to celebrate as India won a first ever Twenty20 International series 2-1 against New Zealand beating them in a rain-affected eight-over match at the Greenfield International Stadium here on Tuesday.

Indian bowlers, especially Jasprit Bumrah, were once again phenomenal in restricting an upbeat New Zealand squad from chasing down a manageable 68-run target. The Kiwis fell 6 runs short of India's first inning total.

The three-match series was locked 1-1 after the hosts won the opening match in Delhi while New Zealand clinched the second encounter in Rajkot.

Colin de Grandhomme was the highest scorer for the visiting team as he remained unbeaten at 17 runs off 10 balls with 2 sixes. Martin Guptill (1 off 3), Colin Munro (7 off 6, 1 six) and skipper Kane Williamson (8 off 10) could not do much and were back into the dug out when there were only 28 runs on the scoreboard.

The Kiwis had a poor start to their chase when Bhuvneshwar bowled opener Martin Guptill with a slower ball that swung away to hit the off-stump. Guptill was going for an ambitious heave through mid-wicket, but was beaten by the movement in the air.

Colim Munro, the other New Zealand opener, departed in the next over when he holed out to mid on off a Jasprit Bumrah delivery.

Kane Williamson and Glenn Phillips added 20 runs between them before both fell to consecutive balls. Williamson was run out thanks to an accurate throw by Hardik Pandya while Phillips was caught while attempting to hit Yadav against the turn.

Henry Niholls fell while attempting a sweep of Bhuvneshwar only to pick out Shreyas Iyer at fine leg. Tom Bruce was run out later in that same over as the Kiwis tottered at 49/6 after seven overs.

With 19 runs needed in the final over, Colin de Grandhomme did give the visitors a glimmer of hope when he smashed the third ball for a six.

But with the Kiwis needing 12 runs off the last three balls, Hardik Pandya bowled a tidy line to ensure that India won the match and the series.

The main hurdle in New Zealand's way to the match as well as series victory was Jasprit Bumrah who finished his two overs for 2 wickets and conceded only 9 runs off those. He was awarded man of the match as well as the player of the series for his phenomenal performances.

Yuzvendra Chahal, though, did not take any wickets but kept the scoring rate under check as he sustained only 8 runs off his 2 overs. Hardik Pandya bowled the last over in which he conceded 11 runs but managed to keep the Kiwis behind the line.

Bhuvneshwar Kumar was a little expensive as he gave 18 runs in two overs but took the important wicket of Guptill. Kuldeep Yadav also plucked a wicket in his one over for 10 runs.

It was a very close match which was clearly won for India by its bowlers and the fielders who stopped some crucial runs as well as took amazing catches.

Earlier, after being put in to bat first, India posted a 68-run total in a hit-hard 8-over game, the final of the three-match T20I series.

Also Read: India sets 68-run target against New Zealand in 8-over game

With heavy rain lashing the city, the start was delayed by a couple of hours and the match was reduced to an eight overs a side affair.

Fast bowler Tim Southee bowled well for New Zealand with figures of 2/13 in his two overs. Leg-spinner Ish Sodhi copped some punishment from the Indian batsmen, but ultimately ended up with figures of 2/23. Fast bowler Trent Boult also bagged a wicket.

Asked to bat first by the Kiwis, the hosts ran into trouble in the third over when Southee sent back openers Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma off consecutive deliveries.

Indian skipper Kohli had a promising start, smashing leg-spinner Ish Sodhi for a boundary and a six off back to back balls before falling later that same over while attempting to send another delivery into the stands.

Sodhi bagged another wicket in his next over when Shreyas Iyer mistimed his shot and holed out to Martin Guptill at long off.

With Hardik Pandya and Manish Pandey seeming dangerous with the bat, it seemed that India will go past the 70-run mark.

But Boult produced an excellent final over to contain the hosts to a manageable total.

Pandey was caught at the boundary by an excellent fielding effort by Colin de Grandhomme and Mitchell Santner while attempting to hit a Boult delivery out of the park. Santner had made the initial catch but even as he was falling to the ground he lobbed the ball to de Grandhomme.

Shubhanshu Sharma

Shubhanshu Sharma

Writer has 6 years of experience in digital media. Presently working as Senior Sub Editor at An avid reader and always willing to learn new things and techniques.

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