New Zealand End Pakistan's Unbeaten World Cup Run
Ross Taylor hit a stunning unbeaten century and Tim Southee took three wickets as New Zealand pulled off a resounding 110-run win over Pakistan in their ICC Cricket World Cup Group A game in Pallekele.
After New Zealand racked up 302 for seven, Pakistan were bowled out for 192 as the only remaining perfect record of the competition disappeared and New Zealand jumped to to the top of the group table.
Taylor took advantage of being dropped twice to smash eight fours and seven sixes on his way to 131 not out in 124 balls while Martin Guptill also hit 57.
New Zealand's bowlers, led by Southee and Kyle Mills, then reduced Pakistan to 66 for six and although Abdul Razzaq hit a defiant half-century, there was no way back for the 1992 champions.
After winning the toss and choosing to bat, New Zealand made a poor start when they lost Brendon McCullum, bowled by Shoaib Akhtar for six and Jamie How, trapped in front by Umar Gul for four but were revived by a 57-run partnership for the third wicket between Guptill and Taylor.
Guptill played fluently, hitting seven fours in 86 balls before he was bowled by leg-spinner Shahid Afridi as Pakistan's spinners bowled their side into a strong position by slowing the run-rate and taking wickets.
Off-spinner Mohammad Hafeez trapped James Franklin in front for one but Pakistan would go on to pay for costly misses behind the stumps by wicket-keeper Kamran Akmal - the guilty party for both of Taylor's reprieves.
Following contributions of 28 from Scott Styris and 19 from Nathan McCullum, Taylor stepped on the gas, motoring to his 4th One-Day International century as sixes rained down on the crowd.
Along with Jacob Oram, who hammered 25 in nine balls with three maximums, Taylor played supremely as 100 runs were added in the last five overs.
Gul returned three for 32 while Akhtar, Abdur Rehman, Afridi and Hafeez all took a wicket apiece.
New Zealand's relatively poor start was put into perspective when Pakistan batted as they quickly slipped up. Southee trapped Mohammad Hafeez (5) in front before having Kamran Akmal (8) and Misbah-ul-Haq (7) smartly caught by Taylor and Styris.
Mills backed up his fellow opening bowler by having Ahmed Shehzad dismissed leg before for ten and then Younus Khan bowled for nought.
Afridi then played an entertaining, but brief cameo of 17 in nine balls, hitting one huge six before his dismissal - bowled by Oram - left his side at 66 for six.
Umar Akmal made a neat 38 as he and Razzaq attempted to keep Pakistan in the match and they had just taken their team past three figures when Akmal pulled Nathan McCullum into the deep where he was safely held by Oram.
Razzaq thumped nine fours but his efforts proved to be in vain; he was also caught by Oram off the bowling of Styris. Umar Gul was then left unbeaten on 34 in 25 balls when Styris struck again to have Akhtar caught by McCullum as New Zealand rounded off a comprehensive victory.
Southee returned three for 25, Mills two for 43, Styris two for 17 and McCullum two for 28.
The one low point for New Zealand was a knee injury to captain Daniel Vettori.
© Cricket World 2011