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Bracewell, Astle shine as New Zealand take 1-0 lead

Doug Bracewell picked four wickets
Doug Bracewell picked four wickets

New Zealand 249-5 (Worker 57) beat
West Indies 248-9 (Bracewell 4-55) by five wickets
First One-Day International in Whangarei

Doug Bracewell made a splendid comeback with a four wicket haul while Todd Astle had an impressive debut with three wickets as New Zealand restricted West Indies to 248 and later chased down the target in 46 overs with five wickets in hand in the first One-Day International in Whangarei and claim a 1-0 lead in the series.

New Zealand won the toss and decided to bowl first. The openers Chris Gayle (22) and Evin Lewis (76) started the innings with caution managing just one four runs off the first five overs.

Gayle soon opened up with two boundaries and a six in the next two and West Indies ended the first powerplay with a score of 40 for naught.

Bracewell (4-55) produced a brilliant first over that saw him dismiss Gayle and Shai Hope (0) in the first two deliveries but the innings was consolidated by a 62 run stand between Lewis and Shimron Hetmyer (29). The 100-run stand between the duo came in the 22nd over.

West Indies' momentum was dented a bit when Astle (3-33) and Lockie Ferguson (2-49) struck in quick succession to remove Hetmyer and Jason Mohammed (9) while Bracewell returned back to snare Jason Holder (8) but that came after Lewis completed a well-compiled half-century.

By the 35th over mark, West Indies were 176 for five and just when Lewis was stepping up the gear, he was trapped LBW by Astle, who also had Ashley Nurse (2) dismissed in a similar fashion in his next over.

Just as West Indies were looking to be dismissed cheaply, Rovman Powell (59) provided the much needed late flourish in his 50-ball knock that had two boundaries and four sixes to take the total to 248 for nine in the 50 overs.

In the chase, George Worker (57) and Colin Munro (49) provided a solid opening stand of 108 runs off 100 deliveries with the former even completing a half-century.

Even though both fell in quick succession, Kane Williamson (38) and Ross Taylor (49 not out) carry forwarded the momentum to put the Black Caps in course of victory which they eventually completed in 46 overs with five wickets in hand.

Bracewell was awarded the player of the match for his four-wicket haul as New Zealand take a 1-0 lead in the series.

© Cricket World 2017