Darwin: Medium pacer Deepak Hooda (3/26) led an impressive Indian bowling performance that paved the way for an easy seven-wicket win over New Zealand in an U-19 Tri-series match, here Wednesday.
Already in the final, this was India's fourth consecutive victory and will take on Australia in the title clash on July 12. After bowling out New Zealand for 119 in 47.2 overs, India chased down the total with as many as 155 balls remaining at the Marrara Oval here.
New Zealand, after electing to bat, got off to a reasonably good start with openers Rakitha Weerasundara and Tim Seifert putting on 34 in 9.2 overs for the first wicket. But once Seifert (5) was dismissed by Abhimanyu Lamba, the Kiwis faltered badly and were reduced to 68 for five in 26.2 overs.
The Indian bowlers, with their relentless effort, never let the opponents off the hook, and maintained an immaculate line and length. Middle order batsmen Graeme Tryon and Kyle Jamieson battled hard at the crease putting on a 35-run stand in 83 balls for the sixth wicket. Jamieson was the highest run-scorer for his side, with 34 off 61 deliveries while Tryon took 47 ball to make 14 runs.
After that the Indian bowlers quickly folded the Kiwi lower-order. Besides Hooda, off-spinner Aamir Gani (2/15) and Kuldeep Yadav (1/13) were the other successful bowlers for India.
In reply, India lost opener Shreyas Iyer (4) early but skipper Vijay Zol (46 not out) joined hands first with opener Akhil Herwadkar (25) and then with Sanju Samson (23), adding 37 and 48 runs respectively to take his side home. For New Zealand, spinner Dane Watson took two wickets while Jamieson got one Indian batsman out.