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India vs New Zealand | India Level T20I Series in Auckland With Clinical Win

India registered a comfortable 7-wicket win in the second Twenty20 International (T20I) against New Zealand at Auckland on Friday, leveling the three-match series 1-1.

Cricketnext Staff |February 8, 2019, 4:11 PM IST
India vs New Zealand | India Level T20I Series in Auckland With Clinical Win

India registered a comfortable 7-wicket win in the second Twenty20 International (T20I) against New Zealand at Auckland on Friday, leveling the three-match series 1-1.

Rohit Sharma (50) and Rishabh Pant (40) were among the runs as India chased down the required target of 159 with 7 balls to spare.

Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan got India off to a quick start, with the former in particular looking in ominous form, hitting 3 fours and 4 sixes en route to his 16th half-century in T20I cricket.

Dhawan was more circumspect in his approach and only scored two boundaries during his stay at the crease.

The two shared a 79-run partnership that got India off to a flying start and looked set to do more damage before Rohit top-edged a half-tracker from Ish Sodhi to Tim Southee at mid-wicket.

Dhawan departed shortly thereafter after a snorter from Lockie Ferguson took his top-edge and was easily collected by Colin de Grandhomme at backward point.

The onus was now on Vijay Shankar and Rishabh Pant to finish the match. Shankar hit one boundary and a six but was soon foxed by a slower bouncer from Daryl Mitchell.

Pant was then joined by MS Dhoni and the two put together a 44-run partnership to ensure India raced home in 18.5 overs.

Dhoni rotated the strike regularly whereas Pant took on the bowlers whenever he could, ending the innings with a boundary down the ground.

Earlier, New Zealand had made 158/8. India started well with the ball after New Zealand won the toss and opted to bat, taking early wickets then being economical at the end of the innings.

Krunal Pandya was the pick of bowlers, ending the innings with 3/28. Left-arm seamer Khaleel Ahmed finished with figures of 2/27 as the tourists were successful in stopping the hosts from exploiting Eden Park's short boundaries.

New Zealand started well but Bhuvneshwar Kumar quickly pegged them back when he got Tim Seifert – who scored 84 in the previous match – to edge one to Dhoni.

Krunal first got rid of Colin Munro before controversially getting rid of Daryl Mitchell, who called for the review after he was given out LBW.

Hotspot revealed an edge but Snickometer showed no spike as the ball passed and the decision was not overturned, much to the chagrin of Kane Williamson and Mitchell.

Williamson also fell victim to Krunal in the eighth over and New Zealand looked shaky at 50/4 before De Grandhomme hit his maiden T20 half century off 27 balls that included four sixes to spark some much-needed life into the innings.

De Grandhomme’s innings ended when he miscued the ball straight to Rohit Sharma just after completing the milestone. This ended a 77-run partnership with Ross Taylor that was key in reviving the home side’s innings.

Taylor then departed on 42 after a good bit of fielding from Vijay Shankar, who managed to hit the stumps from the deep to send the in-form batsman back to the dugout.

The innings ended when Ahmed got rid of Tim Southee on the final ball of the 20th over.

The final T20I will be played on Sunday (February 10).

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Team Rankings

Rank Team Points Rating
1 Australia 3028 116
2 New Zealand 2406 115
3 India 3085 114
4 England 3466 105
5 Sri Lanka 2454 91
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Rank Team Points Rating
1 England 4820 127
2 India 5819 119
3 New Zealand 3716 116
4 South Africa 3345 108
5 Australia 3518 107
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Rank Team Points Rating
1 Australia 5285 278
2 England 4564 268
3 India 9319 266
4 Pakistan 5470 260
5 South Africa 4380 258
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