Christchurch: Riding on a sensational batting performance from the likes of Tendulkar, Yuvraj and Dhoni, India defeated New Zealand by 58 runs to win 3rd ODI at the AMI Stadium in Christchurch on Sunday to take an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series.
Chasing a huge target of 393 runs, the black caps were bowled out for 334 runs in 45.1 overs.
The Black Caps started well, with the opening stand between McCullum and Ryder looking incredibly dangerous, their opening stand of 165 had threatened to take the game away from India at one stage of the game. Jesse Ryder hit a sparking maiden ton and Brendon McCullum scored an entertaining half-century but India clawed their way back with two run outs.
A superb piece of fielding from Suresh Raina saw the back of New Zealand"s stand-in skipper McCullum. The hard-hitting batsman smashed 71 runs off just 68 balls – a knock that included six boundaries and three huge sixes. The Kiwis lost their second wicket when Ross Taylor padded to short fine leg and ran for a single, but Ryder refused, Yuvraj Singh made a flat return and Mahendra Singh Dhoni flicked the ball back on to the stump to make it 179/2.
In the next over, Yuvraj took the third Kiwi wicket when he trapped Martin Guptill (1) plumb in front of the wicket.
Harbhajan Singh took the prized wicket of Ryder in the next over when he had him caught at long off by Zaheer. The stocky Kiwi opener hit his maiden ODI century enroute 105 off 80 balls with the help of 4 sixes and 12 fours.
Harbhajan struck again when Jacob Oram (7) edged a delivery onto his stumps to put India firmly in command.
Zaheer then took two wickets in three balls in his second spell. He first shatterred the stumps of Grant Elliott (18) by a superb yorker and a ball later, clean bowled Peter McGlashan (7).
Yuvraj took his second wicket when he clean bowled Ian Butler (24) to reduce the Kiwis to 251/8.
Later Kyle Mills (52 off 34) and Tim Southee (32 off 20) joined hands and put up an 83 run partnership for the 9th wicket to give the Kiwis an outside chance of creating history.
Earlier Sachin Tendulkar scored his first ever century in New Zealand soil that steered India to a an almost unassailable total of 392-4. He was ably supported by Yuvraj Sing (87), Mahendra Singh Dhoni (68) and Suresh Raina (38).
Sachin Tendulkar's superb knock came off 133 balls and was studded with 5 sixes and 16 fours. Master blaster who was unbeaten on 163, pulled a muscle and decided to retire hurt.
Sachin Tendulkar was named the man-of the-match for his breath taking innings of 163 not out.
India now lead the five match series 2-0 with two more matches to go which means, they cannot lose the series from here on. The next match will be played at Seddon Park, Hamilton on March 11.