Sensational Kohli and Dhoni dominate Kiwis in Mohali

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Virat Kohli and MS Dhoni compiled a serene 151-run partnership to guide India to a seven-wicket victory and the brink of ODI series success against New Zealand.

After being dropped on six, Kohli registered his 26th ODI century, taking fourth place on the all-time list from Kumar Sangakkara, as a Mohali masterclass from the hosts' star man took India to a 2-1 lead in the five-match series.

Jimmy Neesham (57) and Matt Henry (39 not out) deserved a share of the spotlight for a superb late cameo in the Black Caps innings, dragging the tourists to a competitive 285 all out before Henry removed Ajinkya Rahane early and then Dhoni, although much of the damage had been done at that point.

Kohli ensured he would take all the plaudits, however, ending unbeaten on 154 - the highest individual score at the Punjab Cricket Association Stadium.

Captain Dhoni had joined Kohli at the crease with India at 41-2 after Rahane (5) and Rohit Sharma (13) had failed to fire, leaving them slightly behind the required rate.

What followed were a pair of innings plucked straight out of either man's textbook as Kohli worked the ball intelligently both sides of the wicket and Dhoni set his sights back over the bowlers' heads.

Both men passed notable landmarks in the partnership, Dhoni scoring his 9,000th ODI run, while Kohli passed 3,000th runs in the format. The India captain also surpassed the legendary Sachin Tendulkar's tally of sixes in 50-over action.

For all that, Kohli's innings ought to have been ended in its infancy, but Ross Taylor dropped the simplest of catches after Henry was edged straight to him at slip.

After Dhoni joined Kohli, the pair added 50 runs in nine overs to steady the ship and put pressure on a Kiwi side struggling to control a dew-dampened ball.

Kohli oozed class throughout and brought up his fifty with a whipped shot off his pads, while Dhoni reached an ODI half-century for the first time in a year soon after before surpassing Tendulkar's maximums mark in the next over with a typically brutish smash down the ground.

Dhoni departed after making 80, playing an uncertain shot off Henry to Taylor at short cover, but Kohli continued unabashed and reached three figures with a dab to third man before displaying his power to drill Neesham to the rope next ball.

With 23 runs required still from the final three overs, Kohli sent the home fans wild, taking Trent Boult for 22, and allowing Manish Pandey (28) to hit the winning runs in the following over.

In the end, New Zealand were left to count the cost of a fitful innings, anchored by Tom Latham's 61 and Neesham's more frantic innings late in the piece.

The returning all-rounder and Henry at least made India work for the win after the likes of Martin Guptill (27) and Kane Williamson (22) had struggled to offer Latham suitable assistance and a collapse of four middle-order wickets in as many overs stunted the Black Caps' progression.