India seal ODI series as bowlers run riot in Raipur
After a crackerjack of an affair in the series opener, all the hopes that the fans came to the stadium with ahead of the second ODI of a pulsating thriller was doused midway as India ran absolute riot against a stuttering Kiwi batting line-up.
Opting to field first, Mohammed Shami dealt an early blow, producing an absolute ripper to get the big wicket of Finn Allen. Mohammed Siraj would return in a while with the second clout of the day for the Kiwis as he would get to angle away the cherry from Henry Nicholls to further bolster the stranglehold around New Zealand’s neck.
The next man to depart would be Daryl Mitchell as Shami would pull off an absolute stunner, showcasing his razor-sharp reflexes. Making matters worse, Devon Conway would also shortly be on his way back to the stands after Hardik Pandya would pluck a mid-air ripper off his own bowling. Aggravating matters to the extent of some serious damage, the Kiwi skipper would be caught off-guard as Shardul Thakur managed to force a sharp nick off his bat.
The Kiwi hero from the last game, Michael Bracewell coupled with Glenn Phillips came together to arrest the decline and did a decent job for the sixth wicket stand, adding 41 runs before Mohammed Shami would produce the all-important mis-hit to get the better of Bracewell. Mitchell Santner once again seemed to be in decent touch as he motored along with Phillips, helping New Zealand to cross the three-figure mark.
However, the Indian bowlers would soon decide that they had had enough resistance already and it was time for them to mop up the tail. Hardik Pandya would produce the big fish of Mitchell Santner while Washington Sundar would leave Glenn Phillips bamboozled for pace as the latter would hole out to Suryakumar Yadav in the deep.
Sundar would have another say in the matter, bagging Ferguson while Kuldeep Yadav would return with the solitary blow of the afternoon, snuffing out the Kiwi hopes as he removed Blair Tickner from the center.
Chasing 109, India was off to a slow start, warily averting the traps that the surface had to offer and once the initial jitters were off, Rohit Sharma went all guns blazing, leaving New Zealand stranded in a land of no return.
Peppering the bowlers to all nooks and crannies of the park, Rohit sailed hammer and tongs to his half-century while Shubman Gill calmly slotted in at the other end, dropping anchor as India cruised along to the total. Despite a couple of stuttering blocks, India sealed the bragging rights of the game as Shubman Gill administered the coup de grace to seal a record series win for the Men in Blue in Raipur.