Southampton: The World Test Championship Final seems to be heading for a tight finish after both India and New Zealand battled hard on the fifth day of the rain-hit showpiece match here on Tuesday.
India pacer Mohammed Shami sizzled with a four-wicket haul but could not stop New Zealand from taking a crucial 32-run lead as the Black Caps scored 249 runs after resuming at 101 for two.
India, who scored 217 runs in their first innings, then ended the fifth day at 64 for two with a 32-run lead in their pocket.
Rohit Sharma (30) was watchful until he misread a straighter one from Tim Southee that caught him in front of the wicket towards the end of day's play. This was after Southee had already dismissed Shubhman Gill (8).
Ever-reliable Cheteshwar Pujara (12) and skipper Virat Kohli (8) were at the crease at stumps.
With three full sessions to play and a favourable forecast announced for the reserve day on Wednesday, the sixth day will come with the possibility of a draw as well as a result.
Earlier, New Zealand could eke out only a 32-run lead in the first innings as India, powered by pacer Mohammed Shami's four-wicket haul (4/76), dismissed the Kiwis for 249 on the fifth day of the rain-hit World Test Championship final here on Tuesday.
New Zealand, who began the day strongly placed at 101 for two, were reduced to 135 for five in 72 overs at lunch as Shami removed Ross Taylor (11) and BJ Watling (1) before Ishant Sharma got rid of Henry Nicholls (7).
Colin de Grandhomme (13) fell in the second session but the last four wickets added 87 runs to take the team to the eventual score. Skipper Kane Williamson grinded hard for his 49 (177 balls) before edging to slips off Ishant as the eighth wicket.
Shami, who hit the good length consistently, scalped Ross Taylor (11), BJ Watling (1), Colin de Grandhomme (13) and Kyle Jamieson (21) while Ishant Sharma and Ravichandran Ashwin shared five wickets between them and Ravindra Jadeja took one wicket.