Cricket Article

India win rain-affected thriller to clinch series

India win rain-affected thriller to clinch series Photo: IBL

India beat New Zealand by 6 runs in their final T20 match in Thiruvananthapuram, to clinch their three match series by two to one, in a match reduced by rain to eight overs a side.

Unfortunately for the capacity crowd, persistent drizzle delayed the start of the match, and there were fears that the rain would prevent a single ball being bowled. However, eventually the covers came off, and the match started, although reduced to 8 overs a side.

It was New Zealand, forced into one change from the previous match who won the toss and decided to field, Tim Southee coming in for the sick Adam Milne. For their part, India replaced Axar Patel and Mohammed Siraj with Kuldeep Yadav and Manish Pandey.

Inevitably, the match was reduced to a thrash to see who could score the most off their allotted 8 overs, with the value of individual performances minimised. India scored 67/5 in their innings, with Manish Pandey top scoring with 17, whilst Hardik Pandya (14 not out) and Virat Kohli (13) also reaching double figures.

Southee was the pick of the New Zealand bowlers with 2 for 13, whilst Ish Sodhi also claimed two wickets, although he was relatively expensive conceding 23 runs in his 2 overs.

Despite the advantage of batting second, New Zealand were behind the required run rate from the start, due to tight bowling from Indian spinner Yuzvendra Chahal who only conceded 8 runs, from his two overs, and man of the match Jasprit Bumrah who took 2 wickets for the loss of only 9 runs.

For the visitors, Colin de Grandhomme top scored with 17 not out, including 2 sixes, but Glenn Phillips (11) was the only other player to record a two digit score, as New Zealand finished their innings on 61/8.

India then claimed the series, much to the delight of the home crowd. New Zealand will head for home knowing that they pushed the hosts close in both the T20 and ODI series.

Sunny c
Sunny C Sports Pundit staff writer

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