Mount Maunganui, Feb 2: New Zealand suffered another horrendous collapse to hand India a seven-run win and 5-0 series victory in Ross Taylor's 100th T20 international on Sunday (February 2).
Tim Seifert (50) and milestone man Taylor (53) had steered the Black Caps to within sight of a consolation win at Bay Oval before familiar frailties again cost them near the finish line.
Jasprit Bumrah claimed 3-12 from his four overs and Navdeep Saini chipped in with 2-23 to destabilise New Zealand as they tried and failed to chase down 163.
India rested Virat Kohli and will hope Rohit Sharma, who top-scored with 60, quickly recovers from the suspected calf injury that prematurely ended his innings as they look ahead to the forthcoming ODI series.
After stand-in skipper Rohit elected to bat, India initially looked on course to exceed the 165 they set prior to prevailing in a Super Over at Westpac Stadium two days ago.
Sanju Samson squandered the opportunity granted to him in Kohli's absence, the opener driving Scott Kuggeleijn's wide delivery straight to Mitchell Santner at short cover, but his second-over exit failed to prevent the tourists from making a strong start.
Rohit and KL Rahul (45) put on 88 in 10 overs before the latter presented another simple catch to all-rounder Santner, this time from Hamish Bennett's bowling.
Shreyas Iyer made a sedate 31-ball 33 as India struggled to accelerate after Rohit decided he was unable to continue, having received treatment for a muscle problem.
Kuggeleijn removed Shivam Dube for five at the end of the 19th over and, though Tim Southee went for 52 from his allotted overs, the Black Caps appeared to have restricted India to an achievable target.
That especially seemed to be the case during the rapid 99-run partnership between Taylor and Seifert, the pair at one point taking 34 from six Dube deliveries.
But, having lost their nerve in back-to-back Super Over losses in Hamilton and Wellington, New Zealand's habit of throwing away winning positions again became an issue.
Seifert and Daryl Mitchell succumbed to Saini and Bumrah in consecutive overs to force a change in momentum, which completely swung India's way as Santner, Kuggeleijn and Taylor all departed in quick succession.
The Black Caps had lost 5-25 when Bumrah scrambled Southee's stumps to give little meaning to some late Ish Sodhi fireworks at the end of a lopsided series.