New Zealand crush Zimbabwe by 10-wickets
Friday 04 March 2011
New Zealand became the second team to achieve two 10-wicket wins at a World Cup - the first being South Africa in 2003 - as Martin Guptill and Brendon McCullum comfortably led them home against Zimbabwe in Ahmedabad today.
Chasing a mere 163, Black Caps openers Guptil (86 off 108 balls) and McCullum (76 off 95 balls) chalked off the required runs in 33.3 overs, after Zimbabwe's batting was decimated by paceman Tim Southee's three for 29 and two wickets each from Daniel Vettori and Kyle Mills.
New Zealand had begun their current World Cup campaign with a similar margin of victory over Kenya and following a disappointing seven-wicket loss to Australia, this latest success puts them back in contention for qualification from Group A.
Zimbabwe were in trouble almost from the off when Hamish Bennett ran out Charles Coventry (0) with a direct hit in the second over, while the dangerous Tatenda Taibu (8) was dropped at cover by captain Vettori off Southee but fell lbw to the very next delivery.
The recovery lasted all of 15 runs as Craig Ervine (11) slashed Mills straight to Jesse Ryder at backward point.
And Vettori more than made amends for his earlier miss by despatching counterpart Elton Chigumbura (1) and Regis Chakabva (0) in his first over.
Even though Zimbabwe were left reeling at 46 for five, Taylor kept his nerve to notch up a 40-run stand with Greg Lamb but the opener was out six short of his half-century, trapped lbw by Scott Styris.
A quick throw from Guptill had Lamb run out for 18 while Graeme Cremer's 43-ball 22 was ended by Mills.
Utseya led a closing-over fightback, smashing three boundaries to frustrate New Zealand's bowlers but he and Ray Price (11) departed in successive Southee overs to signal the end.
Guptill began the Kiwi chase in emphatic fashion, smashing two boundaries and a six in the first over while McCullum found his boundary shots after a comparatively slower start.
Zimbabwe's bowlers provided very little resistance - their attempts at wicket-taking reduced to half-hearted appeals and one unsuccessful umpire review - with Guptill bringing up his half-century in 68 balls.
McCullum followed soon after, hitting a boundary to cross the mark, as the duo - who ended with 13 boundaries and four sixes between them - knocked off the remaining runs with ease.
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