So, it’s a wrap and New Zealand have turned out to be the victorious side in the final T20I and have claimed the series by beating a formidable Indian team, in what will be considered as redemption for them after the ODI series thumping.
The second innings for the men in blue started off in an unwanted manner as Shikhar Dhawan was quick to be dismissed on 5, after getting caught at deep mid wicket on Mitchell Santner’s over. Vijay Shankar and Rohit Sharma did put the pressure back on the kiwis, with Shankar being the batsman dealing in fours and sixes, while Rohit Sharma kept the other end secure by playing the anchor knock.
Vijay Shankar eventually fell just short of 7 runs of scoring his maiden half century for India after attempting a slog sweep over deep mid wicket, with Grandhomme taking a sharp catch.
Rohit Sharma seemed to struggle with the willow as he was unable to get into his zone, and as a result of it, was gone caught behind on 38 after facing 32 deliveries. Rishabh Pant’s blazy 28 of 12 balls with 3 huge sixes was proving to be deadly for the Kiwis, but a wicket at an important time of the 21 year old by Tickner made things hard for the Indians.
Hardik Pandya too looked like he was up for a show with a knock of 21 of just 11 deliveries, while having 2 sixes and a boundary to his name. However, Kuggeleijn’s quick pace was too hot to handle for Pandya as he hit the top edge for a comfortable catch taken by Williamson.
MS Dhoni’s stay was short in the crease and got out for just a couple of runs, as winning the game became an improbable task for the visitors.
But the match was still there to win for India, as Krunal Pandya and Dinesh Karthik terrorized the Kiwi bowlers in the final few overs by smashing them for boundaries and sixes all over the park.
At one point it seemed as if the duo, with the momentum gained have it in them to steer India past victory. Unfortunately, for the men in blue it wasn’t to be, as a few touch and go moments, along with a couple of dot balls cost India the game, as they fell short of just 4 runs.
Karthik’s knock of 33 from 16, tagged along with Krunal Pandya’s 26 from 13 did give Team India more than a glimmer of hope, but that was just it, as New Zealand took the advantage of scoring a big score early on in the innings.
About the Author
Comes from the United Arab Emirates, is a sports junkie and a journalist, who has been following cricket as well as football since childhood. Played cricket in academies, school, and university levels. A fanatic follower of one of Europe's biggest ever football clubs - Manchester United.