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India vs New Zealand, 3rd T20: India beat Kiwis by 6 runs to clinch series

With heavy rain lashing the city, the start of the third T20I was delayed by a couple of hours and the match was reduced to an eight overs a side affair.

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India Vs New Zealand

Thiruvananthapuram, Nov 7: India defeated New Zealand by six runs in the third and final Twenty20 International (T20I) to win the series at the Greenfield International Stadium here on Tuesday.

The three-match series was locked 1-1 after the hosts won the opening match in Delhi while New Zealand clinched the second encounter in Rajkot.

With heavy rain lashing the city, the start of the third T20I was delayed by a couple of hours and the match was reduced to an eight overs a side affair.

Having restricted the hosts to 67/5 after winning the toss, the New Zealand batsmen struggled right from the start and could only manage 61/6 in their eight overs.

Pacer Jasprit Bumrah was the most successful among the Indian bowlers with figures of 2/9 in his two overs. His fellow pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar and left-arm spinner Kuldeep Yadav bagged a wicket each.

The Kiwis had a poor start to their chase when Bhuvneshwar bowled opener Martin Guptill with a slower ball that swung away to hit the off-stump. Guptill was going for an ambitious heave through mid-wicket, but was beaten by the movement in the air.

Colim Munro, the other New Zealand opener, departed in the next over when he holed out to mid on off a Jasprit Bumrah delivery.

Kane Williamson and Glenn Phillips added 20 runs between them before both fell to consecutive balls. Williamson was run out thanks to an accurate throw by Hardik Pandya while Phillips was caught while attempting to hit Yadav against the turn.

Henry Niholls fell while attempting a sweep of Bhuvneshwar only to pick out Shreyas Iyer at fine leg. Tom Bruce was run out later in that same over as the Kiwis tottered at 49/6 after seven overs.

With 19 runs needed in the final over, Colin de Grandhomme did give the visitors a glimmer of hope when he smashed the third ball for a six.

But with the Kiwis needing 12 runs off the last three balls, Bhuvneshwar bowled a tidy line to ensure that India won the match and the series.

Earlier, India posted 67/5 in their allotted eight overs.

Fast bowler Tim Southee bowled well for New Zealand with figures of 2/13 in his two overs. Leg-spinner Ish Sodhi copped some punishment from the Indian batsmen, but ultimately ended up with figures of 2/23. Fast bowler Trent Boult also bagged a wicket.

Asked to bat first by the Kiwis, the hosts ran into trouble in the third over when Southee sent back openers Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma off consecutive deliveries.

Indian skipper Kohli had a promising start, smashing leg-spinner Ish Sodhi for a boundary and a six off back to back balls before falling later that same over while attempting to send another delivery into the stands.

Sodhi bagged another wicket in his next over when Shreyas Iyer mistimed his shot and holed out to Guptill at long off.

With Hardik Pandya and Manish Pandey looking dangerous with the bat, it seemed that India will go past the 70-run mark.

But Boult produced an excellent final over to contain the hosts to a manageable total.

Pandey was caught at the boundary by an excellent fielding effort by Colin de Grandhomme and Mitchell Santner while attempting to hit a Boult delivery out of the park. Santner had made the initial catch but even as he was falling to the ground he lobbed the ball to de Grandhomme.

Brief scores:

New Zealand: 61/6 (Colin de Grandhomme 17 not out; Jasprit Bumrah 2/9) vs India: 67/5 (Manish Pandey 17; Tim Southee 2/13, Ish Sodhi 2/23).

WeForNews Bureau

 

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FIFA WC 2018: Brazil edge past brave Costa Rica with last gasp goals

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brazil vs costa rica fifa 2018

Sochi, June 23: Philippe Coutinho and Neymar Junior scored late in the second half as Brazil ensured their passage to the second round with a hard-earned 2-0 win over Costa Rica in a Group E clash of the FIFA World Cup here on Friday.

Both Brazilians struck in the second half added time at the Saint Petersburg Stadium to hand the five-time World Cup winners their first victory in the tournament.

Costa Rica managed to hold fast for the full 90 minutes of normal play thanks to a solid display from goalkeeper Keylor Navas but one minute into stoppage time, Barça’s Coutinho rescued Brazil, driving through the defense to attack a loose ball in the penalty area, smashing it home between the legs of the Real Madrid man between the posts.

Then, in the dying embers of stoppage time, of which there were six minutes, Neymar, who was yet to score at the FIFA World Cup in Russia, connected to a simple cross to tap home and seal the game.

At the final whistle, the most expensive player in the world broke into tears of relief in the center of the pitch.

Brazil, one of this year’s favourites to win the trophy, all but secured its place in the knockout stages of the competition, recovering from a 1-1 draw in its opening match against Switzerland, who in turn is to meet with Serbia in the evening kick-off.

Costa Rica put on a tough display in the first half knowing that a loss would essentially resign them to booking an early ticket home, but the players tired towards the end of the 90 minutes and succumbed to the relentless attacking tactics of the Brazilians.

Brazil, who now top the table with 4 points, is set to play Serbia on Jun 27 in its final Group E match.

IANS

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Ahmed Musa double downs Iceland to keep Nigeria’s World Cup dreams alive

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nigeria vs iceland fifa 2018

Volgograd (Russia), June 23: Two brilliant strikes by Ahmed Musa propelled Nigeria to a 2-0 win over Iceland in a Group D match of the 2018 FIFA World Cup here on Friday.

Musa (49th, 75th minutes) scored both his goals in the second half as Nigeria revived their chances of advancing to the second round.

The Africans, who had lost 0-2 to Croatia in their campaign opener, now have three points from two matches.

They now face a must win clash against Argentina in their third and last group encounter.

Iceland have two points from as many matches. They had held mighty Argentina 1-1 in their first match.

The result also helps the chances for Lionel Messi’s Argentina to advance, as they can move from bottom of the table into second with a win over Nigeria, so long as Iceland do not beat Croatia by an equal or larger margin.

In the first half of the game, chances were few and far between. While Nigeria dominated possession, Iceland got the better chances to take the lead.

The best of them all was a Gylfi Sigurdsson effort which was tipped over the bar by Nigeria goalkeeper Francis Uzoho.

Nigeria nosed ahead four minutes into the second period when Victor Moses sprinted down the right wing and crossed towards Musa. The Nigerian controlled beautifully, before slamming home to give his side the lead.

Musa could have grabbed a hattrick had his attempt from 20 yards not come off the crossbar.

Musa then sped past Iceland right-back Kari Arnason on the wing to round goalkeeper Hannes Halldorsson and score his second of the evening.

Iceland were handed a lifeline when Tyronne Ebuehi was late on a challenge on Alfred Finnbogason, and the referee gave a penalty — though only after reviewing the play on video.

But Sigurdsson sent his shot high over the bar and into the stands after a short run-up and Nigeria held on to take the three points.

IANS

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World Cup: Switzerland beat Serbia 2-1 in Group E tie

Switzerland equalised in the second half, thanks to a superb long range strike by Granit Xhaka (52nd).

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Switzerland vs Serbia

Kaliningrad (Russia), June 23 (IANS) A late goal by Xherdan Shaqiri earned Switzerland 2-1 win over Serbia in a Group E clash of the FIFA World Cup at the Kaliningrad Stadium here.

Aleksandar Mitrovic handed Serbia the lead in the fifth minute during the match on Friday.

Switzerland equalised in the second half, thanks to a superb long range strike by Granit Xhaka (52nd).

Shaqiri (90th) found the winning goal in the final minute of regulation time.

Switzerland now have four points from two matches.

Serbia have three points from two games.

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