An excellent game that ended in the Super Over didn’t bring New Zealand any glory in Hamilton and the hosts have already lost the series 3-0 heading into the fourth T20 in Wellington.
India have played like true champions, as they were able to overturn deficits and poor fielding performances to end up winners. With the series in the bag, the visitors are expected to ring in changes and give some of the benchwarmers game time.
All that is left for New Zealand is to fight for pride in the remaining two matchesw as the Kiwis look to get on board.
Captain Kane Williamson’s return to form (95 off 48 balls, 8×4 6×6) did little to New Zealand’s chances, as they stumbled at the final hurdle. Colin Munro (99 runs, SR 119.27) and Martin Guptill (94 runs, SR 156.66) seem intent on giving good starts. However, the poor usage of Tim Seifert stuck in the middle-order is a grave concern.
Bowling hasn’t really clicked either, with the slog over leakage remaining a worry. Hamish Bennett hasn’t really shone on his comeback (ER 10.81), while Tim Southee (two wickets, ER 9.30) remains an enigma with his poor effectiveness.
India have sewed up the series at the first available opportunity, and that’s thanks to their top-order. While KL Rahul (140 runs, SR 145.83) remains their man of the series so far, the return to form of Rohit Sharma is a welcome boost from Hamilton.
Jasprit Bumrah had an off day in the third match, but with Mohammed Shami and Bumrah in the ranks, India’s slog-over bowling is well stocked. India’s spinners are also pulling their weight much better than their counterparts.
Virat Kohli’s men showed good character in coming back from the dead to win the third T20I. They have now earned a chance to experiment and the likes of Washington Sundar and Navdeep Saini could get an immediate chance. The Kiwis will hope that these changes will disrupt their rhythm and play to their hands. After all, the hosts are in desperate need of a win to arrest their losing slide.
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History & Statistics
- New Zealand have won their last six T20Is at this venue.
- New Zealand have a 2-0 win-loss record against India at this venue.
- The team batting first has won four of the last five T20Is at this venue.
- India have won four of their last five T20Is in New Zealand (including the Super Over win).
- India have won their last six overseas T20Is, including the win via Super Over.
Knocks of 45, 11 and 38 with a series SR of 132.39 isn’t poor by any standards, but Virat Kohli maintains different level of standards. The Indian captain should look to make his next stay at the crease a bigger one.
Tim Seifert has made his name as a swashbuckling batsman during India’s last tour. This time around, staying in the middle-order hasn’t helped his game much. Can the turn his series around?