McCullum Powers New Zealand To Victory

McCullum Powers New Zealand To Victory
McCullum Powers New Zealand To Victory
©REUTERS / Action Images

New Zealand 259-7 (Williamson 74) beat
England 258 (Trott 68) by three wickets
First One-Day International, Hamilton

Brendon McCullum, Kane Williamson and Martin Guptill played starring roles as New Zealand beat England by three wickets in the first One-Day International in Hamiton.

McCullum and Williamson scored half-centuries while Guptill played through the pain to steer New Zealand home, overhauling England's 258 with seven balls to spare.

Mitchell McClenaghan took four for 56 and James Franklin three for 38 as England were dismissed despite half-centuries from Ian Bell, Jonathan Trott and Joe Root.

Williamson set things up for the Black Caps with 74 before Guptill, scarcely able to run having retired early in the innings, returned to make 27 not out alongside Brendon McCullum, who hit 69 not out in 61 balls, making the decision to move him down the order and take advantage of two new balls look a smart one.

New Zealand won the toss, inserted England, and quickly removed Alastair Cook for four. Having made such a noise about not being able to play a warm-up game, his cheap dismisal was hardly a surprise when he was bowled by McClenaghan.

England's next three batsmen put such matters behind them, Bell making 64 in 79 balls, Warwickshire team-mate Trott 68 in 90 and Yorkshire's Joe Root 56 in 64 to take the tourists to 222 for when Root followed Eoin Morgan (1) and Jos Buttler (21) back to the pavilion.

Then it started to slide for England as New Zealand bowled much better as the innings went on, preventing the lower order from capitalising on the position they foun themselves in.

McClenaghan also removed Buttler, Stuart Broad (1) and Steven Finn (0) while Franklin dismissed Bell, Root and Graeme Swann (16).

New Zealand's innings started much as England's had when BJ Watling was bowled by James Anderson for two. Guptill then retired but Williamson, supported by innings of 22 from both Ross Taylor and Grant Elliott, kept New Zealand on track.

His dismissal, run out by Bell and Chris Woakes, brought the elder McCullum to the crease and despite losing Franklin (3) and Nathan McCullum, he played a fine knock, including six fours and three sixes. Guptill returned with the score on 218 for seven in 45.5 overs and with plenty of work still to do.

However, he simply responded to not being able to run properly by hitting four fours and a six as England failed to what New Zealand had done with the ball at the death.

Finn leaked 14 runs from the 47th over, Woakes 13 from the 48th and although New Zealand still needed 13 from 12 balls, McCullum and Guptill only needed five, Stuart Broad the bowler taking the final blows.

The two sides meet again in Napier on Wednesday 20th February.

© Cricket World 2013

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