The BLACKCAPS did well to get to 285 after being asked to bat first, but it was never going to be enough if Virat Kohli or MS Dhoni got going - and they both did.
The pair put on 151 for the third wicket to take the game away from the visitors, who were earlier aided by a Tom Latham half century and a rear guard action from Jimmy Neesham and Matt Henry to get a competitive total on the board.
It proved in vain as Kohl’s 26th ODI century propelled India to victory and a 2-1 lead in the five game series which now moves to Ranchi for game four.
NZ XI: Guptill, Latham, Williamson (c), Taylor, Anderson, Ronchi, Neesham, Santner, Southee, Henry, Boult
India XI: Sharma, Rahane, Kohli, Dhoni (c), Pandey, Jadhav, Pandya, Patel, Mishra, Yadav, Bumrah
Martin Guptill (27 off 21) was back to his bludgeoning best at the top of the order, as he got the BLACKCAPS innings going with a couple of lusty straight blows. The first flew all but out of the PCA Stadium, as he stood tall and teed off over wide mid on for a six on any ground. His second was over wide mid-off and then, as if not to be out done, Tom Latham got in on the act to make it three sixes in 20 balls, laying into a short one from Umesh Yadav and depositing it over the square leg fence for his second maximum in as many games.
Continues to be the rock at the top of the BLACKCAPS order. Looks calm and confident at the crease. He cruised past his fifth half century of the tour and deserved more than the 61 he ended up with.
India bite back with the ball
At 153 for 2 in the 29th over the BLACKCAPS were eying a total of 300+. India had other ideas and put the breaks on the visitors by picking up wickets throughout the middle of the innings. They claimed 6 - 46 to have the BLACKCAPS in all sorts of trouble at 199 for 8 at one stage.
With the above in mind, the 84 run ninth wicket partnership (a New Zealand record) between Jimmy Neesham (57 off 47) and Matt Henry (39 off 37) was gold-dust for the BLACKCAPS. They took the situation from dire to delightful in a better than a run a ball rescue job. The way Neesham kept his cool while wickets fell around him and then controlled the tempo was impressive, while Henry’s early guts and back end ball striking was the cream on top.
After some initial fireworks, both Indian openers were sent back to the pavilion with just 41 on the board. Henry and a Southee off cutter doing the damage. It could have been three down had Ross Taylor hung onto a low chance in the gully off Virat Kohli early on.
The run chase experts
Their phenomenal records speak for themselves and Virat Kohli and MS Dhoni (80 off 91) are even better in a run chase - and so it proved. The pair masterfully combined for a 151 run third wicket stand to break the back of the chase. They scored at a run a ball for much of it combining power and timing along with some excellent running between the wickets. Classy and at the same time contrasting combination.
Too good today. Gave an early chance, but apart from that he was imperious during his 26th ODI hundred. Knew when to work the ones and when to attack. Played some sweet cover drives and a couple of ridiculous flicks over mid wicket. A class act who LOVES a run chase. Fair play to him.