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PIX: Rohit's 'Super' show as India edge NZ to seal series 3-0

January 29, 2020 16:46 IST

Images from the third T20 International between New Zealand and India in Hamilton, on Wednesday.

Rohit Sharma

IMAGE: Rohit Sharma celebrates after India beat New Zealand in the Super Over. Photograph: Phil Walter/Getty Images

Rohit Sharma belted two sixes off the final two deliveries of a Super Over to give India victory in a thrilling finish in the third Twenty20 international against New Zealand at Seddon Park in Hamilton on Wednesday and clinch the series with two games to spare.

 

Having earlier smashed a half-century, Rohit finished on 15 not out in the Super Over after he hit two sixes off Tim Southee to lead India to 20-0 after New Zealand scored 17-0 in their over bowled by Jasprit Bumrah, with Kane Williamson scoring 11, while Martin Guptill finished on five.

New Zealand captain Williamson had almost single-handedly led his side to a win in the regulation 20 overs when he blasted 95 from 48 balls but was dismissed by Mohammed Shami with three balls remaining and two runs needed for victory.

Shami, however, conceded just one run through a bye on the penultimate ball then bowled Ross Taylor on the final delivery as the match finished in a tie and into the Super Over.

Rohit Sharma

IMAGE: Rohit Sharma hits a six off the final delivery of the Super Over to lift India to victory. Photograph: Phil Walter/Getty Images

India, who scored 179-5 in their innings, won the first two games of the five-match series in Auckland at the weekend.

Rohit (65) and KL Rahul had given India a blistering start, with Rohit's 20th Twenty20 half-century being reached inside the first six overs as they put on 77 runs in the first seven.

Rahul was dismissed on the final ball of the ninth over but at 89-1 with 11 overs remaining the tourists were still well placed to score over 200 before New Zealand clamped down in the second half of the innings.

Hamish Bennett, who got clubbed for three sixes and two fours by Rohit in the sixth over, dismissed the Indian opener in the 11th then two balls later got rid of Shivam Dube and the torrent of runs slowed.

The fourth game is in Wellington on Friday.

Earlier, Rohit's blitz included six fours and three sixes as he put on 89 runs for the first wicket with K L Rahul (27 off 19 balls) to give India a flying start after they were put into bat.

IMAGE: India's players celebrate after Mohammed Shami dismissed Ross Taylor off the final delivery to send the match into a Super Over. Photograph: Phil Walter/Getty Images

This was after New Zealand won a third straight toss, but opted to field this time around. The hosts made one change, Scott Kuggeleijn coming in for Blair Tickner. India remained unchanged.

Rohit and Rahul teed off immediately as the New Zealand bowlers struggled to come to terms with the slow pace of the Seddon Park pitch.

Both Tim Southee (0-39) and Hamish Bennett (3-54) were taken for runs as the Indian openers unleashed a flurry of boundaries. India raced to 69 off the first six overs.

Rohit got to his half-century off 23 balls, having smacked 27 runs off Bennett's second over. It was the third time he scored a T20I half-century off as many balls, his fastest coming off 22 balls against the West Indies in 2016.

Rahul though fell to Colin de Grandhomme (1-13) at the other end.

Surprisingly, Shivam Dube (3) was promoted to number three, but the move did not work. He was out after facing a laborious seven deliveries, which also sucked the momentum out of the Indian innings.

Kane Williamson

IMAGE: New Zealand captain's Kane Williamson's blazing 48-ball 95 went in vain. Photograph: Phil Walter/Getty Images

The pressure told at the other end as Rohit was dismissed off Bennett as well. India lost three wickets for seven runs in the space of three overs.

Skipper Virat Kohli (38 off 27 balls) and Shreyas Iyer (17 off 16 balls) then tried to resurrect the innings with a 46-run partnership for the fourth wicket. Both hit a six each.

Iyer's dismissal was the turning point, stumped off Mitchell Santner (1/37) in the 17th over. Two overs later, Kohli was caught at extra cover.

Manish Pandey (14 not out) and Ravindra Jadeja (10 not out) pushed the score past 170 but India fell short of a 200-score the openers had set up.

India lead the five-match series 2-0 after winning the first two T20Is in Auckland.

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