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India pile on New Zealand's Super Over misery, series lead swells to 4-0

India pile on New Zealand's Super Over misery, series lead swells to 4-0

For the second time in as many games, India snatched a Super Over thriller against a nervy New Zealand to take their lead within touching distance of a T20I series whitewash.

New Zealand once again squandered opportunities to capitalise on their strong position in the game and heavily paid for their lack of composure in the final stages of the match.

The hosts' self-destructive tendencies kicked in during a stunning last over from Shardul Thakur, who denied New Zealand a victory in regulation time.

With seven required from six balls and seven wickets in the tank, the possibility of a Super Over seemed far-fetched at that point in time.

Veteran batter Ross Taylor was the first to be dismissed in a calamitous period for New Zealand when he failed to pick a well-disguised knuckle delivery from Thakur.

A first-ball boundary from Daryl Mitchell then seemed to have sealed the deal for the Black Caps bringing the equation down to less than a run-a-ball.

A suicidal bye cost the home side dearly with half-centurion Tim Seifert unable to make the crease at the end where wicketkeeper KL Rahul smartly flicked the ball onto the stumps.

The bespectacled Mitchell Santner could not turn his heel around quickly enough for a double and instead settled for a single on the fourth ball.

There was further drama on the penultimate delivery with the right-handed Mitchell skying the ball to Shivam Dube leaving his team the arduous task of finishing off the two runs in one ball.

Santner could only manage to throw his hands at a wide full-length delivery from Thakur and get run-out in the process of scrambling back for two, taking the game into yet another Super Over.

The same guys who were in the middle in the third T20I were chosen to bear the burden with the ball in the six-ball shootout as Jasprit Bumrah and stand-in skipper Tim Southee came out to face the heat.

Bumrah's over included two tough chances being grassed by the fielders while the last ball saw a catch being taken on the bounce as New Zealand managed just 13 runs.

Rahul then bludgeoned the first ball from Southee deep into the stands for a massive six, getting his team off to a flier.

He lifted India's spirits with a terrific boundary but was dismissed on the third ball to reignite New Zealand's hopes of their first win in the series.

Amidst the cacophony of mayhem, India captain Virat Kohli calmly tapped the ball to sprint for a double exemplifying his nerves of steel in the pressure situation.

He capped off proceedings with a delectable short-arm jab on the fifth ball that raced away to the boundary rope as India completed an incredible comeback.

The visitors had come from the depths of despair at 88-6 in the 12th over of their innings to a competitive 165-8 courtesy of Manish Pandey's sublime fifty and Thakur's valuable contribution with the bat.