Hamilton: Kane Williamson’s effortless 95 followed by 11 runs in the super Over went in vain as his knock couldn’t help his side save the T20 series against India as the visitors took an unassailable 3-0 lead in the five-match series here on Wednesday.
Needing 10 to win off the last two deliveries Rohit Sharma smashed consecutive sixes in the final two balls of the Super Over to lead India to their maiden T20 series win in New Zealand following a nerve-wracking finish. Rohit turned out to be the star for India as he also top-scored with a 65-run knock to guide the visitors to 179 for five in their 20 overs.
New Zealand had it all under control with two runs needed off four balls and six wickets in hand to overhaul India’s total, but they faltered. Mohammed Shami bowled a brilliant final over to tie the game and bring back memories of the 2019 World Cup final, which New Zealand agonisingly lost to England on boundary count.
Williamson rued his side’s misfortune with Super Overs and said the Black Caps need to try and finish off things in regulation time. “Super Overs haven’t been too good for us, so we probably need to try and do better in regular time,” he said. “(But) It was a much better performance all round. We fought back well with the ball after their start. Both sides maximised the slightly shorter side towards the scoreboard.”
Williamson, however, didn’t hide his disappointment, saying New Zealand need to learn from their Indian counterparts on how to win ‘big moments’ of a match. “Pretty disappointing, losing after an effort like that, but it’s a game of small margins,” he said. “Throughout the three balls, we’ve seen India, with their experience, stand up in the big moments, and we must learn from them. It was nice to spend some time in the middle, build some partnerships with the guys, and try and take the game deep,’ he added. The fourth T20 International will be played in Wellington on Friday.