Amit Mishra produced a magical spell to claim 5 for 18 as India clinched five-match ODI series 3-2 with a thumping 190-run victory in the final game, here on Saturday.
It was a perfect Diwali gift for the Indian cricket fans as Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s men carried the demolition job in style as the spinners made Black Caps’ succumbed to their lowest-ever total against India in ODIs.
Batting first, India scored 269 for six on a surface where scoring was difficult as Rohit Sharma (70) and Virat Kohli (65) hit half-centuries.
In reply, New Zealand were skittled out for a paltry 79 in only 23.1 overs. There were five New Zealand batsman who failed to open their account during their dismal last day on Indian soil.
Mishra, who picked his second five-for was supported well by Axar Patel (2/9 in 4.1 overs) and Jayant Yadav (1/8 in 4 overs).
The leg-spinner, who did not get a chance during the Test series ended up with 15 wickets in the five-match series. Not only did his performance fetch him Man of the Match but also the Man of the Series award pipping Virat Kohli, who scored 358 runs with a century and two half-tons.
A score of 270 on a surface where the ball wasn’t coming onto the bat would have been a challenge but New Zealand would have hardly imagined that wickets will fall in a heap when they were placed at 63 for 2.
The visitors lost eight wickets with addition of just 16 runs in space of 51 balls dashing hopes of their first bilateral series win in India.
It took five balls for the Kiwis to realise that the road ahead is rocky when Umesh Yadav cleaned up last match’s hero Martin Guptill to make them 0/1 in first over.
Skipper Kane Williamson and New Zealand’s most consistent batsman of the series, Tom Latham (19) tried to build a partnership but before they could settle down a fit-again Jasprit Bumrah gave another breakthrough dismissing the left-hander to end a 28-run partnership.
Dhoni employed spin-force full on from both ends and no one disappointed including debutant off-spinner Jayant, who trapped Corey Anderson (0) lbw en route to his maiden wicket.
It was Patel who broke Kiwi’s best partnership of the day that yielded 38 runs when the leftarm spinner dismissed the New Zealand skiper for 27 (4x4) in the 14th over.
Next over, Mishra took the wickets of Ross Taylor (19) and BJ Watling (0) in four balls before Jayat took his debut wicket.
The leg-spinner once again had a twin breakthroughs -- in the form of James Neesham (3) and Tim Southee (0) in the 20th over as it was as good as over for New Zealand who were tottering for 74/8 in 19.5 overs.
Earlier, Kohli and Rohit hit contrasting half-centuries on a slow track as India managed a decent 269 for 6 after opting to bat first.