New Zealand managed to hold their nerves in a nail biter in the third and final T20I against India at the Seddon Park in Hamilton to clinch the three match series 2-1. Chasing a stiff target of 213, the men in blue failed to get over the line by just 4 runs to bring an end to their unbeaten streak of 10 T20I series victories in a row.
The visitors failed to get off to a good start, losing opener Shikhar Dhawan early in the innings before Vijay Shankar (43) and Rohit Sharma (38) came together to post a 75 run stand for the second wicket to pull the visitors back into the contest. Rishabh Pant added a quickfire 21 off 11 balls before getting dismissed by Blair Tickner once again trying to play a reckless shot. Hardik Pandya, who was promoted to number five in the batting order ahead of MS Dhoni, slammed 21 runs off 11 deliveries and looked in good touch before giving away his wicket Scott Kuggeleijn in a hilarious manner.
It was a back of the length delivery bowled at 146 kph and Hardik Pandya lost his shape completely while trying to go for the pull. He ended up splicing it and the ball lobbed up in the air to hand over easy catch for Kane Williamson at cover. Pandya had lost his bat too in the process and it ended up behind the wickets while Williamson completed the catch with ease. Pandya’s dismissal brought an end to his cameo of 21 runs off 11 balls and writing seemed to on the wall for the visitors as he walked back towards the pavilion.
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