Finn Allen and Devon Conway had an opening stand of 97 to take New Zealand to 220 against India Start on a bright note. Pacer Umran Malik broke it by taking Allen out, but rain forced a third and final ODI between India and New Zealand at Hagley Oval on Wednesday.
When the rain arrived New Zealand were at 104/1 in 18 overs and DLS calculations showed they were 50 runs ahead. But to make up a complete match, 20 overs were needed in the second half. But with rain taking away the possibility of playing the remaining two overs for a score, New Zealand clinched the series 1–0.
In this round, three of the six matches were washed out due to rain, and one match ended in a draw due to rain. Only two matches have been played in their entirety, one being the T20Is and the other being the ODI series opener. India won the T20I series with the same score as New Zealand won the ODI series.
Chasing 220, Allen and Conway started cautiously, adding just 34 in his first eight overs as he kept Deepak Chahar and Arshdeep Singh in check. Allen was the more aggressive of the two, though, getting some boundaries as Conway took time to find his groove.
Then Conway single-handedly upped the ante in the 10th minute when he hit a four boundary off Chahar – with a straight drive being the pick of the shots. Allen also juggled when he used Imran Malik’s pace in the next over to hit consecutive boundaries.
Allen got his 50th when he hit a flat six with a long run off the Washington Sounder. After pulling Malik through with a fine leg over in the 17th over, Allen attempted a short ball but snapped the toe to cover it, ending a 97-run opening partnership in which he fell for 57.
Conway then pulled Arshdeep through deep mid-wicket before rain put a pause on the proceedings, not for the first time in the series. Earlier, the all-rounder Sundar swiped his maiden 50th ODI to carry India to a modest 219 at 47.3. Were it not for his 50, India would have scored much lower.
On the field, where there was a lot of grass and sideways action, and in the cloudy conditions, India’s innings never really got under way, until Sundar stood up and introduced himself hitting five fours and two sixes in hitting 64 to take the ball. Visitors after the 200 mark.
Apart from him, Shreyas Iyer also bowled 49 as the rest of the bowlers struggled and perished in a disciplined bowling display by New Zealand. For the hosts, the use of Daryl Mitchell as the fifth player was a huge blow, as he picked 3/25 in seven overs.
Adam Milne, who replaced spinner Michael Bracewell, took three wickets for 57 runs in his ten overs. Tim Southee picked a scalp while Matt Henry, despite being relentless, gave just 29 runs in ten very effective overs.
After a 15-minute delay, New Zealand captain Kane Williamson managed a hat-trick winning the toss and put India batting first for the third time in the series. On a green-tinged pitch, Southie and Henry find enough movement to keep Shikhar Dhawan and Shubman Gill in check.
Although Dhawan hit three-sixth bounds by dancing the pitch to negotiate the move on offer, Gill was just off the mark on his twelfth over. Although Gill hit Milne for consecutive well-timed boundaries, the pacer had the last laugh as a right-hander broke straight into square leg.
Iyer stunned with his early drive and had great luck when Milne dropped his catch at third man. He then took out well-controlled pull-ups and cashed in on the show with some fierce cuts through the illegal side.
But he was losing support from the other end as Dao’an’s ruse of using his feet led to Henry’s stumps being cut off. Rishabh Pant hit two edges on the leg side, but missed Mitchell’s pull.
Suriyakumar Yadav edged Milne to slip and when Iyer missed his top homer off Lockie Ferguson, India were in for a real spot of upset. It increased when Deepak Hooda fell while trying to take a short ball, leaving India at 141/6.
But Sundar went through his innings with a flick and pushed Latif past the middle to collect an arc from the boundary. When Southee missed his line, he was quick to pounce on him to put the haul through mid-wicket.
He also helped him beat Mitchell for six, even though he was hiding with him. Sundar was calm on his front drive off Ferguson and then cleverly moved past a short leg off Mitchell Santner.
Although Yuzvendra Chahal managed to finish off a 31-run stand with Sundar, Arshdeep slammed Southee deep mid-wicket for six, before he was dismissed by Mitchell. Sundar got his fifty by hitting Southee over mid-wicket deep for six, before stumping behind, becoming India’s last man to fall.