NZ vs IND | Twitter reacts to rain forcing a record-equalling third tie in T20Is between India and New Zealand

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Rain emerged as the protagonist of the T20I series between the two World T20 semi-finalists as it forced the final game to stop midway into the second innings. India, chasing 161, were right on par with the DLS requirement of 75, thus making the match end in a tie as India won the series 1-0.

After rain abandoned the first T20I between India and New Zealand, it returned to play spoilsport once again in the final match of the series in Napier forcing a premature end to the encounter. Following a 40-minute delayed start to the clash, Black Caps openers Finn Allen and Devon Conway walked out to bat first.

An exhibition of swing bowling from Arshdeep Singh and Mohammed Siraj kept the Kiwis in shackles early on, including the departure of Allen and Mark Chapman, but the hosts eventually broke free on the back of fifties from Conway and Glenn Phillips. At one stage, New Zealand looked set for a big score with the total reading 129/2 and five overs to go albeit the Indian pacers had different plans. The batting side lost six wickets for three runs at one stage, including a team hattrick, as both Singh and Siraj tallied four wickets apiece. 

The target, in the end, was a subpar 161 despite the tricky conditions given the small dimensions of the ground.

Ishan Kishan and Rishabh Pant started off aggressively but in typical fashion could not sustain the onslaught, returning to the pavilion for 10 and 11 respectively. Shreyas Iyer followed suit with a golden duck, leaving India reeling at 21/3 after three overs. However, a Hardik Pandya blitz of 30 off 18 balls ensured India kept at par with the required run rate, despite Suryaumar Yadav failing to reciprocate the last game’s heroics as he succumbed for 13. It had started drizzling by the ninth over and India looked to be in trouble with the par score but a Mitchell Santner misfield allowed them to sneak a run and get on par at 75/4 at the end of nine overs, which eventually proved to be the last sequence of events in the game.

This was a record third tie between the two sides in T20Is, only matched by the three T20Is between the Kiwis and the West Indies among the full member nations. The Men in Blue thus won the series 1-0, a second series win in succession for Hardik Pandya as T20I skipper.

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