Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Guptill, Henry and Boult Sink Australia

Australia Vs New Zealand at Eden Park in Auckland: Feb 3, 2016 - Match Review

New Zealand beat Australia by 159 Runs

New Zealand blew Australia away in the first match of the Chappell-Hadlee series that was played at the Eden Park in Auckland today.

Australian captain won the toss and elected to bowl first at a ground known for its short boundaries. Martin Guptill was in great form leading up to this match having slammed runs off both the touring Sri Lankan and Pakistani bowling line ups. With the destructive Brendon McCullum also returning to the top of the order after a back injury, the Kiwi's got off to a great start. Both the Kiwi openers went hammer and tongs after the Aussie new ball pair of Kane Richardson and Josh Hazlewood. The New Zealand 50 came up in only the 7th over and by the time McCullum departed in the 11th over, 79 runs had already been scored. McCullum had blitzed away to a 29 ball 44 which included 3 sixes, the kind of high impact innings that he generally plays at the top of the order. The innings was reminiscent of his 50 off just 24 balls that he had played at the same venue against Australia in the ICC World Cup 2015.

Kane Williamson, probably the best batsman in the world right now suffered a rare failure as he got out for an 8 ball duck. But Martin Guptill found an able ally in Henry Nicholls, the man who had rescued New Zealand from the lows of 99-6 in a recent ODI against Pakistan. The two put on exactly hundred as Guptill was out for a fabulous 90 scored off just 77 balls. New Zealand lost their way a bit after the wicket of Guptill as they slumped from 181-2 in the 26th over to 234-6 in the 37th but Mitch Santner made a composed 35* off 39 balls to take New Zealand to 307 in their allotted 50 overs.

Having chased down similar scores against India, Australia would have been confident going in to the change room at the mid innings break but they were to soon find out that chasing a huge total against the quality Kiwi bowlers is not the same as chasing against the Indian bowlers.

Marsh was snaffled by Guptill off Henry in the second over and then he cleaned up the Aussie skipper for 18. Boult then took over to get Warner out leg before contentiously to leave the visitors tottering at 39-3 in the seventh over. It soon became worse as Bailey, Maxwell and Marsh all fell one after the other to Henry and Boult as the Australians slumped to 41-6. The impact that Henry and Boult had on the Aussie top order was tremendous and the duo literally blew them away even before the chase could be properly started. Wade and Faulkner made 30’s but it was too little too late as the hole that the Aussie top order had dug for the team was too great to climb out off for the lower order batsmen.

Australia were eventually bowled out for a dismal 148 inside 25 overs. The margin of defeat was a whopping 159 runs.

This blog post is inspired by the blogging marathon hosted on IndiBlogger for the launch of the #Fantastico Zica from Tata Motors. You can apply for a test drive of the hatchback Zica today.

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