3rd ODI: India need 244 for series win after Shami, Pandya shine
Ross Taylor top-scored for New Zealand at Bay Oval. © AFP

A familiar template, with one stark change, unfolded at Mount Maunganui’s Bay Oval on Monday as India restricted New Zealand to 243 in the first half of the third ODI.

New Zealand’s top order fell inside the Powerplay to India’s new-ball pair, increasingly sharp with each passing match they play together. Kane Williamson got a start and threw it away. The only difference from the last two games was that New Zealand allowed the wrist-spin pair of Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav two wickets in 17 overs.

Key to that last chapter was a partnership of 119 in 21.1 overs between Ross Taylor and Tom Latham, who hit fifties to give the Blackcaps something to bowl at. India will back themselves to chase 244 to claim the series 3-0 with two games to spare. (LIVE UPDATES: INDIA vs NEW ZEALAND, 3rd ODI)

Williamson won his second toss of the series and opted to bat, but like the openers before him, failed to make it count. Colin Munro was dropped seventh ball by a diving Dinesh Karthik, edged his eighth wide of slip and was out next ball when he poked to second slip. First strike to Mohammed Shami, in the second over of the game. Martin Guptill whipped Bhuvneshwar Kumar over midwicket for six and drove over mid-on for four in one over, only to steer him to Karthik in the bowler’s next over.  After 6.1 overs, New Zealand had lost their openers with 26 on the board. (FULL SCORECARD: INDIA vs NEW ZEALAND)

Williamson sweetly pushed Bhuvneshwar past mid-off and the stumps for four, punched Yuzvendra Chahal through cover-point and over midwicket with lovely timing. He looked good for his 28, before another wristy flick off Chahal was superbly intercepted by a diving Hardik Pandya at midwicket.

Tom Latham made 51 in a stand of 119 with Taylor.
Tom Latham made 51 in a stand of 119 with Taylor. © AFP

Taylor struggled to negotiate Pandya – playing his first international match since September – and Chahal in a tidy period which yielded 1/28 in ten overs. Taylor’s first 36 balls produced 15 runs, he then moved to 24 off 51 before striking two fours off Pandya in a new spell to find some momentum. He also survived an lbw review off Pandya, with the umpire’s call standing. Two fours off Kedar Jadhav gave Taylor his fifty off 71 deliveries.

Latham ticked along nicely. He hit one four in his first 54 balls but in that time scored 40 with some good running. His first six came in the 36th over when he swung Chahal over square leg. No sooner had he raised his half-century, Latham attempted a second six off Chahal and toe-edged the shot to deep midwicket. With that, Chahal became the leading wicket-taker of 2019, with 12.

Pandya returned for a final spell and had Henry Nicholls gloving a slower bouncer to Karthik, keeping wickets in place of the stiff MS Dhoni, for his first international wicket since August and then Mitchell Santner edging a cut.

Shami returned to get Taylor edging to Karthik for 93 off 106 balls, a failed attempt to run the ball to third man giving the replacement wicketkeeper his third catch and in the same over had Ish Sodhi caught at long-on. Virat Kohli ran out Doug Bracewell and Trent Boult top-edged Bhuvneshwar with a wild slog.

Brief scores: New Zealand 243 in 49 overs (Taylor 93, Latham 51) vs India