Young left-arm pacer Khaleel Ahmed, who went for 50 runs in the first T20I, returned with impressive figures of two for 27 in his four overs on Friday. @ BCCI

India bounced back to level the three-match Twenty20 International series against New Zealand with a crushing seven-wicket win at Eden Park in Auckland on Friday. The bowlers especially were on target and came up with a much-improved performance to restrict the Black Caps to 158/8 in 20 overs. Krunal Pandya was the pick of the bowlers with three for 28 in his four overs.

The target was never going to be enough considering the small dimensions at the Eden Park. India bamboozled their way to victory with seven balls to spare. Rohit Sharma struck form in the right time as he blazed his way to a half century in 29 deliveries which included three boundaries and four sixes. (ALSO READ: Rishabh Pant made full use of the opportunity of batting with MS Dhoni: Harbhajan Singh)

Young left-arm pacer Khaleel Ahmed, who went for 50 runs in the first T20I, returned with impressive figures of two for 27 in his four overs on Friday.

“Because the ground was small, we deliberately bowled back of length to curtail boundaries. We had to shorten the length as conventional swing was not on offer. We showed a lot of improvement today and hope to improve further in the next game,” Khaleel said at the post-match press conference.

He also delved into what stand-in captain Rohit said at the start. “Rohit bhai told us about which were the areas the batsmen will target and how to cut the angles,” he said. (ALSO READ: KL Rahul finds much-needed form in India A’s strong reply against England Lions)

Asked if there were any difficulties bowling at the small venue, Khaleel said: “One difficulty that we face in New Zealand while bowling is running into the wind which is a rarity elsewhere. But then these are little things that you learn and it’s a great experience.”

The series decider will be held at Seddon Park in Hamilton on Sunday and Khaleel believes the final match of the tour will be an exciting affair.

“We have played in Hamilton and there won’t be any surprise element as far as the pitch is concerned. Also, having won the second game gives us confidence going into the final match. We have rectified some of our mistakes from first game and hopefully a few which are there will also be corrected,” he said. (ALSO READ: MS Dhoni’s presence in World Cup important for decision-making: Yuvraj Singh)

“The last time we played at Seddon Park, the ball swung a lot and we had a batting collapse. I believe the final T20 will be a much more exciting affair. Normally, we are getting batting tracks and hopefully this will aid bowlers.”