Smith marathon sets up 68-run win for Australia
Australia 324-8 (Smith 164) beat
New Zealand 256 (Guptill 114) by 68 runs
First One-Day International in Sydney
Steven Smith scored a marvelous 164 to help Australia post 324 for eight following which the bowlers came up with a collective effort to restrict New Zealand to 256 despite a century from Martin Guptill to win the first One-Day International in Sydney by 68 runs.
Australia won the toss and elected to bat first. In the very first over of the innings, Matt Henry (2-74) castled Aaron Finch (0).
In the ninth over, Smith (164) was lucky to escape a LBW decision. The New Zealand did not go for the review but replays suggested it was hitting the stumps.
After adding a cautious 46-run stand with Smith, David Warner (24) became the maiden ODI wicket of Lockie Ferguson (1-73). James Neesham (2-58) further dented Australia's chances when he had George Bailey (17) caught behind down the leg side and also effected a run out of Mitchell Marsh (1).
On the other hand, Smith completed a calm fifty and was looking solid. Giving him company was Travis Head (52) and the duo brought back the innings on course with a 127-run stand.
In the process, Smith completed his maiden ODI century against New Zealand while Head reached his fifty off 56 deliveries.
Trent Boult (2-51) provided New Zealand with the breakthrough when he had Head caught and bowled but Matthew Wade (38) came up with a blistering knock to take the game away from Black Caps.
Wade's innings came at a strike-rate close to 175 and with Smith at the other end crossing the 150-run mark, Australia posted 324 for eight in the 50 overs. Smith's marathon knock helped him level the highest score for an Australian captain which was held by Ricky Ponting.
Tom Latham (2) fell early in the chase when he was castled by Josh Hazlewood (3-49), who also had Kane Williamson (9) dismissed.
The innings was resurrected when Guptill (114) added a valiant 92-run stand for the third wicket with Neesham (34). Guptill crossed his fifty off 55 deliveries.
However, Mitchell Starc (1-37) had other plans when he had Neesham caught at long-on. Even though Guptill waged a stern fight at one end and reached his century off 93 deliveries, he did not receive much support from the rest apart from Colin Munro (49) and Henry (27). In the process, Guptill became the fifth New Zealand batsman to cross the 5000-run mark.
New Zealand were bowled out for 256 in 44.2 overs, handing a 68-run win to Australia. They now lead the three-match series 1-0. Smith bagged the man of the match award.
© Cricket World 2016