NZ v Aus 1st ODI Review: New Zealand hand a heavy defeat to Australia

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It was an very awful start to the Chappell-Hadlee Trophy for Australia as they suffered a heavy 159 run loss at the hands of hosts New Zealand in the series opener at Auckland. Trent Boult (3/38) and Matt Henry (3/41) tormented the Australian top order while Mitchell Santner (2/0) cleaned off the tail-enders to ensure an easy victory for the Kiwis.

The visitors won the toss and opted make the hosts bat first. Brendon McCullum, who is playing his farewell series, opened with the in-form Martin Guptill. Both started off in their natural style and gave a breezy start to the innings. After putting up a good opening stand of 79 runs by the 11th over, McCullum was made to depart by James Faulkner. McCullum needed just 36 runs to become the 3rd New Zealander and 50th overall to make 6000 ODI runs. And, Baz achieved this feat just an over before he got out.

Kane Williamson had an unexpected failure after he was dismissed for a duck by Hazlewood in the 13th over. The fireworks, however, did not completely stop. Guptill was batting just like the way has been doing this season. Boundaries and sixes came in regular intervals from his bat and kept the run rate healthy. Henry Nicolls was also equally good today. Both the batsmen appeared very difficult to remove and going strongly.

However, Guptill (90 off 76 balls) was struck by poor luck after Maxwell’s direct hit caught him short at the bowlers’s end. It was audacious attempt for an unnecessary single which cost him a certain century.

The Australians contained the run rate with a few tight overs and instantly got the rewards in the form Grant Elliott’s wicket which came off the bowling of Mitchell Marsh. The Australians, from here managed to strike regularly which hugely helped them to stop the hosts from getting to a big total. Nicolls (61 from 67 balls) and Corey Anderson (10 from 20 balls) departed in quick succession.

New Zealand eventually reached a commendable 307/8 after 50 overs with help of contributions from the tail-enders, especially Michael Santner (35* from 39 balls) who batted till the end of the innings.

The reply did not start on a good note for the Australians as they lost Shaun Marsh and skipper Steven Smith quickly. An over later, Warner and Bailey returned to the pavilion in successive overs.

The Aussies were reeling at 40/4, courtesy to Trent Boult and Matt Henry who were quickly into action and reaped the best benefits of the assistance from the pitch and conditions. The wicket taking didn’t stop here for the Kiwis as Australia’s condition further worsened in the subsequent over. Maxwell and Marsh were also made to look like an amateur by Boult who dismissed them in a single over.

Both the bowlers finished with 3 wickets each in their devastating opening spell.  A brief resurgence was kicked off by Matthew Wade and James Faulkner who stitched together a 79 runs partnership to delay the virtual defeat. However, New Zealand halted the resistance by dismissing Wade and Faulkner off successive overs.

Santner did the rest of the job pretty quickly as he snapped up the final two wickets off consecutive deliveries in the 24th over to wrap up the Australians innings for just 148 runs.

Brief Scores:

New Zealand: 307/8 in 50 overs (Guptill 90; Marsh 2/35)

Australia: 148 in 24.2 overs (Wade 37; Boult 3/38)

Man of the Match: Martin Guptill