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February 11, 2019

New Zealand survive tight close to claim T20 series


February 11, 2019

HAMILTON, New Zealand: Colin Munro’s explosive 72 set up a four-run win for New Zealand over India in a cliff-hanger finish to Sunday’s Twenty20 match in Hamilton, handing the hosts a 2-1 series victory.

India looked to be on the ropes when they needed 47 off the last three overs.

But Dinesh Karthik and Krunal Pandya together plundered 32 off overs 18 and 19 before Tim Southee restricted the duo to 11 in the 20th.

The morale-boosting victory for New Zealand gave captain Kane Williamson something to smile about after they were whipped 4-1 by India in the earlier one-day international series. It was a more sombre mood in the India dressing after Rohit Sharma had won the toss and defied convention by not batting first in a series decider.

Munro was on song from the start of the decider, charging down the track to smack Bhuvneshwar Kumar over the rope with the first ball he faced to kick off a flying partnership with Tim Seifert.

The pair raced to 80 in the eighth over when the lightning hands of MS Dhoni had Seifert stumped by a hair’s breadth for 43. Munro’s belligerence saw him face just 40 balls in his innings, flaying the bowling with five fours and five sixes.

Vijay Shankar took an equally aggressive stance at the start of India’s chase and the visitors were up at the required run rate through the first half of their innings, but were unable to establish partnerships.

Rishabh Pant raced to 28 off 12 before he became debutant Blair Tickner’s first victim. Sharma made 38, Hardik Pandya’s brief cameo produced 21 while MS Dhoni could only make two in a brief stay at the crease.

India won toss

New Zealand

†T Seifert st Dhoni b Yadav 43

C Munro c H Pandya b Yadav 72

*K Williamson c Yadav b Khaleel 27

C de Grandhomme c Dhoni b Kumar 30

D Mitchell not out 19

R Taylor not out 14

Extras (lb 4, wd 3) 7

Total (4 wickets; 20 overs) 212

Fall: 1-80, 2-135, 3-150, 4-193

Did not bat: M Santner, S Kuggeleijn, T Southee, I Sodhi, B Tickner

Bowling: Kumar 4-0-37-1, Khaleel 4-0-47-1, H Pandya 4-0-44-0, K Pandya 4-0-54-0, Yadav 4-0-26-2


S Dhawan c Mitchell b Santner 5

*R Sharma c Seifert b Mitchell 38

V Shankar c de Grandhomme b Santner 43

R Pant c Williamson b Tickner 28

H Pandya c Williamson b Kuggeleijn 21

†MS Dhoni c Southee b Mitchell 2

D Karthik not out 33

K Pandya not out 26

Extras (lb 1wd 11) 12

Total (6 wickets; 20 overs) 208

Fall: 1-6, 2-81, 3-121, 4-141, 5-145, 6-145

Did not bat: B Kumar, K Yadav, Khaleel Ahmed

Bowling: Santner 3-0-32-2, Southee 4-0-47-0, Kuggeleijn 4-0-37-1, Tickner 4-0-34-1, Sodhi 2-0-30-0, Mitchell 3-0-27-2

Result: New Zealand won by 4 runs

Man of the Match: Colin Munro (New Zealand)

Series: New Zealand won the 3-match series 2-1

Umpires: Shaun Haig and Wayne Knights (New Zealand). TV umpire: Chris Brown (New Zealand). Match referee: David Boon (Australia)

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