NEW DELHI: The third and final rain-hit Twenty20 International (T20I) at McLean Park in Napier ended in a tie via the Duckworth-Lewis method as India clinched the three-match series 1-0.
Bowling first, India bowlers produced a scintillating show, with Arshdeep Singh (4/37) and Mohammed Siraj (4/17) sharing eight wickets between them, and skittled New Zealand for 160 in 19.4. The hosts lost eight wickets for just 30 runs.
For New Zealand, Devon Conway (59) and Glenn Phillips (54) scored contrasting fifties. The duo stitched an 86-run partnership.
Chasing 161 for victory, India were 75-4 after nine overs when rain forced the players off the ground at McLean Park.
With incessant rain lashing the Napier, the match couldn't be resumed. India were at par with the DLS score when rain stopped play and hence the fixture was declared a tie.
Siraj, who was the pick of the Indian bowlers claiming 4-17, was adjudged Man of the Match.
"The wicket wasn't easy to bat and I was prepared to bowl hard lengths which gave me the rewards. I prepared myself to bowl hard lengths and had so much practice during World Cup and I just executed my plans. I always keep it simple. Just bowl the hard lengths. The weather is not in our hands, happy with the series win," Siraj said.
Mohammed Siraj (AP Photo)
With 124 runs in 2 matches at an average of 124, Suryakumar bagged the Man of the Series award.
"Really happy with the way things have gone till now would have loved a full game here but as Siraj said the weather is not in our hands. The pressure is always there and at the same time, I'm enjoying my batting, just going there and expressing myself. Not carrying any baggage out there. The intent and approach will remain the same. We can just go out and express ourselves, would have loved a full game, but that's fine," Suryakumar said.
Suryakumar Yadav (AP Photo)
The first match of the T20I series was abandoned without a ball being bowled.
India went on to thrash New Zealand by 65 runs in the second T20I, thanks to a batting masterclass by man-in-form Suryakumar Yadav. Suryakumar scored an unbeaten 111 off 51 balls, including 11 fours and 7 sixes, to take India to a mammoth 191 for 6. In reply, the Kiwis were wrapped up for 126 in 18.5 overs.
India and New Zealand will now face in the three-match ODI series, starting Friday (November 25) at Eden Park in Auckland. The second ODI will be played on Sunday (November 27) at Seddon Park in Hamilton and the third and final ODI on Wednesday (November 30) at Hagley Oval in Christchurch.
"Would have liked to win the game by playing the full overs, but it is what it is. At some point, I felt attack is the best defence on this wicket. We know the kind of bowling attacks they have, it was very important to get those 10-15 runs extra even though we lost a couple of wickets," India captain Hardik Pandya said after the match.
"A game like this could have given us an opportunity to test some of the players, but having said that, the weather is something we cannot control. I'm going back home, taking my time off and be with my son," he said.