IND vs NZ: India captain Rohit Sharma in action during second T20I in Ranchi© AFP
India’s T20I captain Rohit Sharma on Friday equaled Virat Kohli’s record for most 50-plus scores in the shortest format following India’s seven-wicket victory over New Zealand in the second T20I at the JSCA International Stadium complex in Ranchi. . Rohit scored 117 off 80 balls with KL Rahul as India chased down a total of 154 with 7 wickets and 16 balls left. Rohit scored 55 off just 36 balls and broke one boundary and five sixes. Rahul, on the other hand, hit the top score for India with 49-ball 65, six fours and two sixes.
Rohit’s beat saw him equal Virat Kohli’s record of 29 half-centuries in the shortest format of the match. However, he achieved the feat in his 118th T20I appearance while Kohli reached the same milestone after just 91 games.
Meanwhile, Rahul recorded his 16th fifty in the shortest format. Rohit and Rahul’s match-winning partnership paved the way for India to take an untouchable 2-0 lead in the three-match series.
Rishabh Pant smashed consecutive sixes from James Neesham to secure the series victory for India.
Earlier, New Zealand managed to reach an undersized total of 153/6 after failing to capitalize on a good start by opening batsmen Martin Guptill (31 of 15) and Daryl Mitchell (31 of 28) was given.
Glenn Phillips was the Kiwis’ leading scorer after hitting 34 from just 21 balls.
Meanwhile, Harshal Patel, who played his first international match, was named ‘Man of the Match’ after the pacemaker ended the match with figures of 2/25 of his quota of four overs.
The third and final T20I will be played at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata on Sunday, before both teams will play a two-match Test series, starting on November 25.