Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli hit hundreds as India beat New Zealand by 6 runs
Jasprit Bumrah excelled with the ball after Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma scored centuries as India edged past New Zealand by six runs in third and final One-Day International to win the series 2-1, in Kanpur, on Sunday.
Chasing 338 for victory, New Zealand succumbed under pressure towards the end, finishing on 331 for seven.
Bumrah picked up three wickets for 47, while Yuzvendra Chahal also played a stellar role, taking two for 47.
New Zealand chased the imposing target gamely through fine knocks by Colin Munro (75 off 62), Kane Williamson (64 off 84) and Tom Latham (65 off 52) before being checked by some fine death bowling by Bumrah.
For the better part of the New Zealand innings, India’s bowlers dished out an ordinary bowling performance but bounced back when it mattered the most -- in the last three overs.
This is India's seventh successive ODI series win, while New Zealand are still without an ODI series victory in India.
The run-out of Tom Latham (65 from 52 balls) in the 48th over proved the turning point in the end.
The two teams resume rivalry in a three-match T20I series, starting with the first match in New Delhi on Wednesday, November 1.
Needing to defend 15 runs in the final over, Bumrah (3/47 in 10 overs) delivered yet again and conceded only eight runs in the 50th over. More importantly, he bowled an astounding 32 dot balls in his 10-over spell.
Earlier, Rohit and Virat scored classy hundreds to fire India to a record 337 for six after they were put in to bat.
The two senior Indian batsmen, in the process, became the first pair to complete four double hundred partnerships in ODIs.
Their spectacular showing in the series-decider also helped India comfortably better the previous highest score at Green Park -- 303 for five -- which South Africa posted against them two years ago.
Sharma and Kohli were in complete control after Shikhar Dhawan (14) departed in the seventh over and ended up with a record breaking 230-run stand off 211 balls.
While Kohli had hit a fine hundred in the series-opener, Sharma rose to the occasion after failing in the first two games after New Zealand put the home team in.
The last time he played an ODI in Kanpur, he scored 150, and two years on, the stylish right-hander from Mumbai gave the packed crowd an afternoon to remember.
There are not many prettier sights in cricket than watching Sharma bat in full flow. He did look in fine form, right from the time he slashed a gentle ‘loosener’ from Tim Southee over point in the first over of the match.
The Kanpur pitch, usually slow and low, played well, with the ball coming on to the bat nicely and Kohli and Sharma made full use of the friendly conditions.
The signs were ominous for the opposition when Sharma easily picked pacer Adam Milne for a huge six over mid-wicket.
He gave the same treatment to left-arm spinner Santner in his first over, collecting two boundaries with a cut and sweep before getting to his 50 off 52 balls.
Kohli, on his part, began with two crisp boundaries off Southee, one through the covers and the next one a whip over mid-wicket.
Without taking much risk, the star pair managed to get an odd boundary in the middle overs and by the time Sharma got to his 15th ODI hundred in the 33rd over, India were cruising at 183 for one.
Sharma found the fence more frequently than Kohli, as he hammered 18 fours to go with two maximums.
The two batsmen changed gears in the 36th over and the bowler at the receiving end this time was pacer Trent Boult, who leaked 17 runs in that over including four fours.
The next over saw them pick three fours off Grandhomme, the last one getting Kohli past the 9000-run mark in ODIs. It made him the sixth Indian to do so and fastest to get there overall.
After Sharma fell to a tired shot in the 42nd over, Kohli breezed to his 32nd hundred and his second in the series, with a single off Santner.
His remarkable feat brought a passionate fan into the field of play but before he could get close to his hero the security personnel took care of him.
Kohli’s innings comprised nine fours and six.
Hardik Pandya came out to bat at four, ahead of Dinesh Karthik but fell cheaply.
M S Dhoni, the next man in, smashed three boundaries before he mistimed one and was caught at short third-man.
The last 15 overs fetched 141 runs for the hosts. Bolt was New Zealand’s most expensive bowler; he leaked 81 runs in 10 overs - his worst figures in 50-over cricket.