New Zealand's bowling attack left it late to break down a determined Pakistan and clinch a breathtaking 101-run win on day five of the first Test at Mount Maunganui.

Mitchell Santner (2-52) took the decisive wicket with four overs to spare as the Black Caps were forced to be patient and take six wickets in the last session to seal a tense victory on the final day on Wednesday.

Pakistan batsman Fawad Alam and captain Mohammad Rizwan pieced together a gritty 165-run fifth-wicket partnership that swallowed up 62 overs from the opening two sessions.

Each of the five Black Caps bowlers claimed two wickets apiece as Neil Wagner (2-55) and Kyle Jamieson (2-35) took the key wickets of Rizwan and Fawad respectively.

Pakistan's tailenders were only 27 balls away from a memorable draw in the first of two Tests when Santner caught and bowled Naseem Shah (one), as the tourists lost 31-6 to finish 271 all out in their second innings.

Chasing 373 for victory, Pakistan resumed on 71-3 and the visitors appeared in some early trouble when Trent Boult (2-72) had Azhar Ali caught behind for 38 on the third ball of the day.

But the pair of Fawad and Rizwan dug in and rode their luck on occasions to reach 137-5 at lunch with Pakistan battling for the draw.

The duo made it to tea at 215-4 and, by the time the partnership was broken after more than 62 overs, Pakistan had reached 240-5 as Jamieson removed Rizwan lbw for 60 runs off 191 balls.

Despite a maiden Test half century from Joshua Da Silva, the West Indies lost the second Test against New Zealand by an innings and 12 runs at Wellington.

It was a much better batting performance from the West Indies in their second innings, bowled out for 317, their best total of the series.

 The loss means the West Indies lost the two-match series 2-0.

Resuming on 244 for 6, still needing 85 to make New Zealand bat again, West Indies lost their first wicket of the day in the second over with the score of 252.

 Captain Jason Holder was bowled by Tim Southee for 61, playing down the wrong line to a delivery that hit the top of off stump. He had added only run one to his overnight total.

It was Southee’s first wicket of the second innings after taking 5 for 32 in the first when the West Indies were bundled out for 131.

With the score at 282, Southee picked up his second wicket when he had Alzarri Joseph caught down the legside by BJ Watling after a well-played 24 that came off 12 balls and included three fours and two majestic sixes square of the wicket.

The West Indies still trailed by 47.

Meanwhile, at the other end, Da Silva, who was making his Test debut,was a picture of composure. On 25 overnight, he moved onto his first Test half century with aplomb farming the bowling to protect Chemar Holder, who was also playing in his first Test.

The 50th run was long in coming. After almost two overs on 49, he dropped a Trent Boult delivery into the onside for a single. His maiden half century came up in 77 balls and included five fours.

He celebrated his milestone by smashing a Daryl Mitchell delivery straight down the ground for his sixth four which also brought up 300 runs for the West Indies.

He was eventually trapped lbw by Neil Wagner for 57 to leave the West Indies on the verge of defeat at 307 for 9. He faced 84 balls in his 135-mimute stay at the crease.

Chemar Holder, who had edged a Southee delivery to get off the mark and then brutally hit Mitchell down the down the ground for consecutive fours, remained unbeaten on 13 after Wagner bowled Gabriel for 0 to seal a comprehensive victory.

Wagner finished with 3 for 43 while Boult took 3 for 97.

Scores: New Zealand 460 (Henry Nicholls 174, Neil Wagner 66. Gabriel 3 for 93). West Indies 131 ( Blackwood 69; Southee 5 for 32, Jamieson 5 for 34) and 317 (Campbell 68, J.Holder 61, Da Silva 57; Wagner 3 for 54, Boult 3 for 96).

 

 

 

 

New Zealand strike bowler Trent Boult and captain Kane Williamson have opted out of the T20 series against the West Indies, in order to be fully fit for the Test series. 

The Windies are booked to face New Zealand in a three-match T20 international series, which will run between the 27th to 30th of this month.

Both Boult and Williamson had several strong performances in the recent Indian Premier League (IPL) season, but the Blackcaps have prioritised the Test series.   New Zealand are eyeing a spot in the World Test Championship final at Lord's next year.  They are currently fourth in the standings and need to beat West Indies in the two-Test series in December to stake their claim.

"We've had to make a decision on Kane and Trent to prioritise the test matches, given how important they are to our red-ball team and the fact they both played such big roles in the recent IPL while also managing injuries," New Zealand coach Gary Stead said after announcing the squads.

"There's no secret we're right in the hunt for the World Test Championship final following our two-nil win over India and having Trent and Kane fully fit and focussed for the upcoming series will be crucial."

 

Jasprit Bumrah and Trent Boult blew away Delhi Capitals' top order as Mumbai Indians cruised into another Indian Premier League final with a 57-run victory on Thursday.

Four-time champions Mumbai finished top of the table and will take some stopping in the final next Tuesday on the evidence of this crushing win in Qualifier 1.

Suryakumar Yadav (51 from 38 balls) marked his 100th IPL match with a half-century, while Ishan Kishan (55 not out from 30) also raised his bat as the holders posted 200-5.

Quinton de Kock (40 off 25) and Hardik Pandya (37no from 14) were the other Mumbai batsmen who put on a show at Dubai International Cricket Stadium, with Ravichandran Ashwin (3-29) the standout Capitals bowler.

The game was all-but over early in the run chase as Boult and Bumrah ran riot, the defending champions taking three wickets before Delhi had a run on the board.

Bumrah replaced Kagiso Rabada as the leading wicket-taker in this year's tournament with incredible figures of 4-14 and Boult would probably have claimed more than 2-9 if he bowled more than two overs.

Delhi never recovered from a lethal early burst from the pace duo, who have 49 wickets between them in the 2020 IPL, and their eventual 143-8 was much more than they looked destined for.

Marcus Stoinis (65 from 46) and Axar Patel (42 off 33) salvaged some pride, and Delhi must regroup before facing Sunrisers Hyderabad or Royal Challengers Bangalore on Sunday for the right to play Mumbai in the final.

 

KISHAN AND PANDYA CAP IT OFF

De Kock took 15 off the first over from Daniel Sams, but Rohit Sharma went for a golden duck when he was trapped leg before playing down the wrong line to an Ashwin delivery.

The holders were flying at 63-1 at the end of the powerplay, with Yadav in great touch, but De Kock fell 10 short of a half-century and they were 101-4 in the 13th over when Kieron Pollard became the excellent Ashwin's third victim.

Kishan and Pandya conjured up a devastating late onslaught, though, putting on 60 from only 23 balls, with Anrich Nortje suffering the most as he went for 50 off his four overs.

Pandya launched back-to-back sixes in the penultimate over from Rabada and struck five in total, while Kishan dispatched the last ball of the innings from Nortje over extra cover for six to reach his half-century and bring up the 200.

 

BOULT AND BUMRAH SPELL DOUBLE TROUBLE FOR DELHI

Delhi needed a blistering start to have a chance of chasing down a big target, but instead they became the first IPL team to be three down without scoring a run.

Boult and Bumrah were rested for the Indians' heavy loss to Sunrisers in their last game of the regular season and the refreshed pacemen were bang on the money on their return.

Left-arm quick Boult dismissed Prithvi Shaw and Ajinkya Rahane in the first over before Bumrah bowled Shikhar Dhawan with an unplayable searing yorker.

Shreyas Iyer also fell to the brilliant Bumrah prior to Rishabh Pant being sent on his way by Krunal Pandya to leave Delhi reeling on 41-5, with Stoinis' entertaining knock always going to be in vain.

Delhi Capitals are in increasing danger of missing out on the Indian Premier League play-offs as they suffered a fourth successive defeat, this time by nine wickets to defending champions and leaders Mumbai Indians.

The Capitals were top of the IPL just a couple of weeks ago but have since capitulated and could yet slip out of the top four, with Rajasthan Royals and Kolkata Knight Riders hoping to capitalise and secure a spot in the next phase.

On Saturday the Capitals came undone in the face of another dominant bowling display by Mumbai, with Trent Boult (3-21) and Jasprit Bumrah (3-17) particularly impressive as Delhi were limited to just 110-9.

Shikhar Dhawan was the first to fall for the Capitals with Boult claiming his scalp from just the third delivery of the innings, meaning the opener has failed to reach double figures in three consecutive matches.

Prithvi Shaw (10) soon trudged off too, while Shreyas Iyer, top-scorer with 25, Marcus Stoinis (two) and Rishabh Pant (21) were sent packing in a nine-ball spell, and any hope of a late flurry was snuffed out as no one else managed more than 12 runs.

With such a small target, Mumbai's careful and conservative start to the chase looked smart.

De Kock eventually went for 26 in the 11th over, Anrich Nortje doing the damage, but it was hardly the beginning of a resurgence as Ishan Kishan (72 not out) continued to plug away, reaching 50 at the start of the 12th.

Nortje and Kagiso Rabada (27-0) – the latter wicketless for a second match on the bounce – had no answer to the 22-year-old, who took Mumbai over the line with an emphatic six to reach 111-1, wrapping up a one-sided victory.

KISHAN THE STAR

In the past week or so, Kishan seems to have begun to settle, with scores of 68 not out, 37, 25 and now 72no. His effort on Saturday was better than any of his past eight, and he recorded it against the experienced Nortje and Rabada.

With Kishan named man of the match, captain Kieron Pollard praised him afterwards, saying: "Each and every game Ishan is getting better and better. Long may it continue. He's been able to adapt to different scenarios. He didn't even start at the beginning, then he went number four. He's adapting."

 

ANOTHER DIFFICULT DAY FOR RABADA

Against Sunrisers Hyderabad last time out, Rabada's numbers of 0-54 were alarming, particularly given he had not gone wicketless in 25 IPL matches.

He is now without a wicket in successive matches as he failed to find a way past Kishan – though in the grand scheme of the match, it would have taken something remarkable from the Capitals' bowlers to make up for the poor first innings.

Trent Boult took four wickets and Ishan Kishan blasted an unbeaten half-century as Mumbai Indians returned to the top of the Indian Premier League with a 10-wicket hammering of Chennai Super Kings.

It was the most one-sided of contests at Sharjah Cricket Stadium, where CSK could only post 114-9 on Friday.

That marked something of a recovery for the bottom side, who were reeling on 3-4 after Boult (4-18) and Jasprit Bumrah (2-25) took two wickets apiece in devastating opening bursts.

They were rocking on 43-7 before Sam Curran spared them complete humiliation with 52 from 47 balls. 

Rahul Chahar also capitalised on the sorry Super Kings' batting frailties by taking 2-22 and the Indians openers made light work of moving them back to the summit.

Kishan made 68 from a mere 37 deliveries and the in-form Quinton de Kock finished unbeaten on 46 as the defending champions sealed a thumping win with as many as 7.4 overs to spare.

Victory moves Mumbai level on points with Delhi Capitals and Royal Challengers Bangalore.

 

BOULT AND BUMRAH WREAK HAVOC IN PITIFUL POWERPLAY

CSK were floored by Boult and Bumrah as they lost five wickets in the powerplay for the first time ever.

The brilliant Boult trapped Ruturaj Gaikwad leg before in the first over and had Faf du Plessis caught behind by De Kock after Bumrah struck twice in as many balls, seeing the back of Ambati Rayudu and Narayan Jagadeesan.

Curran offered some much-needed resistance without notable support before he was bowled off the last ball of the innings from Boult, who also dismissed Ravindra Jadeja.

New Zealand seamer Boult is third in the list of leading wicket-takers in the 2020 IPL with 16, one less than Bumrah.

 

SEALED WITH A KISH

It takes a special innings to upstage South Africa white-ball captain De Kock and Kishan produced one.

The 22-year-old struck five sixes in another demonstration of his immense talent, reaching his half-century by disdainfully reverse-sweeping Jadea over the rope.

Gaikwad gave Kishan a life when he put him down, summing up CSK's day, and De Kock - who had made three consecutive half-centuries - struck a couple of sixes as Mumbai coasted to victory.

Defending champions Mumbai Indians were clinical with both bat and ball as Sunrisers Hyderabad fell well short in a 34-run defeat in Sunday's Indian Premier League match. 

Quinton de Kock smashed 67 off 39 balls and a 78-run stand with Ishan Kishan (31) was fundamental in building the foundations for Mumbai's score of 208-5. 

Krunal Pandya's explosion in the final over, during which he battered Siddarth Kaul for 20 from four balls, helped Mumbai get to that tally, which seemed to be above par on a slow pitch. 

David Warner made a pedestrian start, though he picked up the pace to at least gave Sunrisers a fighting chance until his knock was ended on 60, departing in the 16th over to effectively end their hopes. 

There was little help in a disappointing middle-order showing, with pace trio James Pattinson (2-29), Trent Boult (2-28) and Jasprit Bumrah (2-41) doing the damage for Mumbai, who restricted Sunrisers to 174-7. 

Victory means Mumbai now have three wins and two defeats from five games to move top of the table, while a third loss for Sunrisers leaves them sixth.

 

QUINTON DE KOCK OF THE WALK 

Rohit Sharma (6) lasted just five deliveries but De Kock and Suryakumar Yadav (27) put on 42 before the big stand with Kishan boosted Mumbai. 

De Kock, who hit four fours and as many sixes, was the protagonist of the partnership, contributing 54 of the 78 runs. 

LACK OF SUPPORT FOR WARNER 

Pandya may have rued putting down Manish Pandey with a sitter at deep point when he went on to put on a 60-run partnership with Warner. 

But when Pandey clumsily chipped Pattinson to long off, Warner – who had five fours and two sixes in his 44-ball knock – was not helped by Kane Williamson (3) or Priyam Garg (8). 

When Warner got a thick edge to a slower one from Pattinson that was taken with a superb diving catch by Kishan at short third man, the game was up. 

Trent Boult, Lockie Ferguson and Matt Henry all return to New Zealand's one-day squad for the Chappell-Hadlee Trophy series against Australia.

The fast-bowling trio missed the ODI games against India on home soil through injury, though Boult did feature in the two Tests that followed against the same opponents after recovering from a broken hand.

As well as Boult, Ferguson suffered a calf strain while Henry broke his thumb as the Black Caps were blighted by absences during a 3-0 Test series defeat in Australia.

However, they are all available for the upcoming three one-dayers against their trans-Tasman rivals. The first two fixtures take place in Sydney on March 13 and 15, with the finale in Hobart five days later.

Seamers Hamish Bennett and Kyle Jamieson are also in a 15-man squad, along with spinners Mitchell Santner and Ish Sodhi.

"Playing Australia in Australia is one of the great challenges in world cricket and you know you will be severely tested in all aspects of the game," said Black Caps coach Gary Stead.

"Our one-day unit is a pretty settled one with plenty of experience and I think that showed in the recent series against India.

"It’s great to welcome back the class of Trent, Matt and Lockie who spearheaded our run to the Cricket World Cup final last year.

"Kyle's made every post a winner since his international debut this season and he’ll be a handy asset to have in Australia."

 

New Zealand ODI squad: Kane Williamson (captain), Tom Blundell, Trent Boult, Colin de Grandhomme, Lockie Ferguson, Martin Guptill, Matt Henry, Kyle Jamieson, Tom Latham, Jimmy Neesham, Henry Nicholls, Mitchell Santner, Ish Sodhi, Tim Southee, Ross Taylor

New Zealand wrapped up a 2-0 series victory over India with a seven-wicket win in the second Test in Christchurch on Monday.

India set the Black Caps just 132 to win on day three and the hosts had no troubles reaching their target at Hagley Oval.

After 16 wickets incredibly fell on Sunday, India needed a response to begin day three, but they added just 34 runs after resuming at 90-6.

Tom Latham (52) and Tom Blundell (55) ensured New Zealand cruised through their chase to win the series 2-0.

Hanuma Vihari (9) was the first to go on Monday, caught down the leg side by BJ Watling off Tim Southee (3-36).

India were unable to get anything going, although Ravindra Jadeja did manage an unbeaten 16 off just 22 balls.

Trent Boult (4-28) added the wicket of Rishabh Pant (4) and Southee also removed Mohammed Shami (5) before Jasprit Bumrah (4) was run out.

While India's bowlers caused some initial problems to Latham and Blundell, the openers set up what proved a comfortable chase for the Black Caps.

Latham fell to Umesh Yadav (1-45) and Kane Williamson (5) went off Bumrah, who bowled Blundell to finish with 2-39 before Ross Taylor and Henry Nicholls helped New Zealand see out their victory.

New Zealand closed in on victory over India in the second Test after 16 wickets fell on day two in Christchurch on Sunday.

India, who trail the series 1-0, made the better start to the day at Hagley Oval, taking a seven-run first-innings lead after bowling the Black Caps out for 235.

New Zealand had resumed at 63-0 and appearing on track to charge past India's first-innings total of 242.

However, after their fightback, the tourists were reduced to 90-6 at stumps in their second innings, a lead of just 97, as the bowlers dominated.

Trent Boult (3-12) did most of the damage for New Zealand, landing the first blow when he trapped Mayank Agarwal (3) lbw.

A short delivery from Tim Southee (1-20) removed Prithvi Shaw, but India seemed to be steadying through Cheteshwar Pujara and Virat Kohli.

But Colin de Grandhomme (1-3) struck the huge blow, getting Kohli lbw for 14 to reduce India to 51-3.

De Grandhomme dropped Ajinkya Rahane on two but it did not hurt the Black Caps, the India batsman bizarrely playing a Neil Wagner (1-18) short ball onto his stumps.

Boult produced a beautiful inswinger to remove Pujara (24) before also bowling Umesh Yadav (1) as New Zealand closed in on victory.

Earlier, Mohammed Shami (4-81) and Jasprit Bumrah (3-62) had helped India fight back after New Zealand's bright start to their first innings.

Tom Latham (52) and Kyle Jamieson (49) top-scored for the Black Caps, while Ravindra Jadeja produced an incredible catch to remove Wagner (21).

Jadeja stuck out a hand as he jumped near the boundary to hold onto a powerful Wagner pull shot.

That moment of brilliance came as India looked on top, but New Zealand's finish to the day has them on track for a 2-0 series win.

Kyle Jamieson's maiden Test five-for triggered an India collapse as New Zealand made a strong start to the second and final Test on Saturday.

Jamieson tore through India, who went from 194-5 to 242 all out in a remarkable tea session on day one in Christchurch, with figures of 5-45 in 14 overs.

New Zealand reached stumps at 63-0, trailing by 179 runs, thanks to openers Tom Lathan (27 not out) and Tom Blundell (29 not out) at Hagley Oval.

Rain delayed the start of play in New Zealand, where ICC's top-ranked Test side India were looking to bounce back from their crushing defeat against the Black Caps in Wellington.

New Zealand captain Kane Williamson won the toss and opted to bowl first, and it proved a wise decision when Trent Boult (2-89) trapped Mayank Agarwal lbw for seven after India made it through six overs unscathed.

The Black Caps' bowling attack did not have it all their own way – highly rated opener Prithvi Shaw showing intent early on as he kept the scoreboard ticking over.

Shaw scored 54 runs from just 64 deliveries before he fell victim to Jamieson – who claimed 4-39 in the first innings of the opening Test against India on his debut – prior to lunch, Latham's stunning catch at second slip ending a promising knock.

Tim Southee (2-38) then took the prized scalp of struggling India skipper Virat Kohli (3) shortly after lunch as the tourists fell to 85-3.

Only two other wickets fell in the middle session – Ajinkya Rahane (7) and Hanuma Vihari (55) via Southee and Neil Wagner (1-29) – as India looked relatively comfortable heading into the tea break.

But it all fell apart for India in the final session as Jamieson cleaned up the visitors with four wickets in a stunning spell, which saw Kohli's side crumble for 48-5.

Cheteshwar Pujara (54), Rishabh Pant (12), Umesh Yadav (0) and Ravindra Jadeja (9) were dismissed by Jamieson, while Boult ripped out Mohammed Shami's off stump.

Latham and Blundell then saw New Zealand through to the end of play without loss amid fading light after 23 overs.

Tim Southee claimed a five-for to lead New Zealand to a 10-wicket humbling of India in the first Test on Monday.

Southee grabbed his 10th five-wicket Test haul – only two men have earned more for the Black Caps – as New Zealand wrapped up the opening Test inside four days against the ICC's top-ranked team.

Led by paceman Southee, New Zealand skittled touring India for just 191 early on day four and Tom Latham (7) and Tom Blundell (2) easily hit the winning nine runs.

It was a milestone win for New Zealand after the Black Caps registered their 100th Test victory, becoming the seventh nation to reach the century mark in the longest format of the game, while ending a three-match losing run in the unlimited-overs game.

India, who managed just 165 in the first innings as New Zealand posted 348, returned to the crease at 144-4 – still 39 runs adrift.

In a commanding position, the Black Caps put India to the sword after Virat Kohli's visitors lost 47-6 during the morning session.

New Zealand quick Trent Boult (4-39) set the tone with the dismissal of Ajinkya Rahane for 29, before Southee took centre stage at the Basin Reserve.

India were helpless to stop Southee, who knocked over Hanuma Vihari's stumps for 15 the following over and Ravichandran Ashwin (4) was the next to go after being trapped lbw.

Ishant Sharma (12) was also dismissed lbw by Colin de Grandhomme (1-28) before Southee cleaned up Rishabh Pant (25) and Jasprit Bumrah (0) within four deliveries.

It left New Zealand chasing just nine runs and the home team cruised to a massive victory, snapping India's seven-match winning streak in Tests.

Trent Boult's lower-order runs and three vital wickets catapulted New Zealand into a commanding position against India on day three of the first Test.

The left-arm swing bowler clubbed 38 from 24 balls to help the Black Caps post 348 following valuable contributions from Colin de Grandhomme (43) and Kyle Jamieson (44) at Basin Reserve on Sunday.

India, who managed a paltry 165 in the first innings, trailed by 183 runs when Ishant Sharma (5-68) ended Boult's cameo and their headaches grew before the close of play.

Boult removed Prithvi Shaw (14), Cheteshwar Pujara (11) and Virat Kohli (19), while Tim Southee strangled Mayank Agarwal down the leg side for 58 as the tourists battled to 144-4, still 39 runs behind.

India had looked set for a brighter day in Wellington after Jasprit Bumrah extracted an edge from BJ Watling with the first ball of the opening over, after New Zealand had resumed on 216-5.

Southee lasted 14 deliveries before falling to Ishant, which brought debutant Jamieson to the crease.

The towering quick, who claimed four wickets in India's innings, proved there is more than one string to his bow as he hammered four sixes in an entertaining 45-ball knock.

Jamieson and the more measured De Grandhomme combined for 71 runs before departing within five overs of each other, Ravichandran Ashwin (3-99) striking on both occasions.

Number 11 Boult blasted the Black Caps further ahead and then made inroads into India's top order, his short ball drawing Shaw into an edge behind in the eighth over of India's second dig.

Pujara crawled to 11 runs until his concentration failed on the final ball of the second session - his 81st at the crease - with the batsman made to pay for shouldering arms to a full Boult delivery that seamed in and plucked out the off stump.

Kohli's advice prompted opener Agarwal to waste a review on a thin edge off Southee before the India captain gave wicketkeeper Watling his second catch and Boult his third wicket.

Dropping the anchor allowed Ajinkya Rahane (25) and Hanuma Vihari (15) to reach the close unbeaten but New Zealand appear well-placed to take a 1-0 series lead with two days remaining.

Trent Boult has been recalled by New Zealand for the two-match Test series against India after the pace attack leader recovered from a broken right hand.

The 30-year-old left-armer missed the ODIs and Twenty20 matches between the teams after suffering his injury during the Boxing Day Test against Australia in Melbourne.

However, he features in a 13-man squad ahead of the opening Test, which begins at Wellington's Basin Reserve on Friday.

Boult, who has 256 wickets from 65 Tests, is included alongside fellow quicks Tim Southee, Neil Wagner and Kyle Jamieson, with Lockie Ferguson absent due to a calf injury and Ajaz Patel included as the spin option.

Coach Gary Stead said: "It's terrific to have Trent back with us and we're looking forward to the energy and experience he adds to the group alongside his obvious class with the ball in hand.

"Kyle will offer us a point of difference with the bounce he could extract on what is traditionally a good surface in Wellington.

"We're excited to welcome back Ajaz who has done a great job for us overseas and has a proven domestic record in New Zealand conditions."

Ross Taylor is due to win his 100th cap in the first Test, becoming the fourth New Zealand player to reach that mark, after Brendon McCullum, Daniel Vettori and Stephen Fleming.

Stead said: "To play 100 Tests for your country is an incredible achievement and a testament to his work ethic and complete professionalism."


New Zealand squad for Test series against India: Kane Williamson (captain), Tom Blundell, Trent Boult, Colin de Grandhomme, Kyle Jamieson, Tom Latham, Daryl Mitchell, Henry Nicholls, Ajaz Patel, Tim Southee, Ross Taylor, Neil Wagner, BJ Watling.

Kane Williamson praised the way New Zealand handled the pressure after his depleted side completed an ODI series sweep over India with a five-wicket win at the Bay Oval.

The Black Caps' attack – minus Trent Boult and Lockie Ferguson, as well as Matt Henry and Adam Milne – restricted India to 296-7 in the third and final game, despite a century from KL Rahul.

Martin Guptill (66) and Henry Nicholls (80) gave the hosts a sound platform in their reply, sharing an opening stand of 106, and despite a mid-innings wobble, Colin de Grandhomme smashed an unbeaten 58 to see his team home with 17 balls to spare.

Captain Williamson was particularly pleased with the way New Zealand fought hard with the ball, Hamish Bennett claiming 4-64, to restrict their opponents, India having at one stage reached 162-3 during the 31st over.

"As you know on some of these surfaces with some short boundaries, the job of the bowlers is so important," Williamson said during the post-match press conference. "They also operated nicely in partnerships and we were able to hold our nerve in key moments.

"Today was a great example. Once again, we were put under pressure by India, but we were able to have a really good death phase, which helped us keep India to about a par total.

"A lot of positives in different areas, so it's an opportunity to build on this series and keep moving forward as an ODI side."

Opposite number Virat Kohli admitted India had been second best throughout the 50-over games, a dramatic reversal after they had won 5-0 in the Twenty20 series.

"With the ball we were not able to make enough breakthroughs. And in the field as well, we were not good at all," Kohli said at the presentation ceremony.

"We didn't deserve to be on the winning side at all in the series. [We] haven't played so badly, but if you don't grab your chances at this level then teams are going to hurt you."

The focus for both nations now turns to Test cricket, with a two-match series beginning at the Basin Reserve in Wellington on February 21.

Williamson was able to provide a positive update on injured duo Boult and Ferguson, saying: "[I'm] Expecting all of those guys to be fit for the first Test and they're all tracking nicely."

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