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Tahir spins South Africa to a massive 78-run win over New Zealand at Auckland

Imran Tahir continued his wicket-taking spree
Imran Tahir continued his wicket-taking spree

South Africa 185-6 (Amla 62) beat
New Zealand 107 (Tahir 5-24) by 78 runs
Only Twenty20 International in Auckland

Hashim Amla's 43 ball 62 followed by Imran Tahir's five for 24 helped South Africa bag massive 78 runs victory over New Zealand at Auckland on Friday.

Kane Williamson after winning the toss opted to field first. Black Caps' lead pacer Trent Boult (2-8) provided the crucial early breakthrough by dismissing in-form Quinton de Kock for a duck.

Faf du Plessis (36) then joined Amla as the duo added 87 runs in just eight overs to recover the visitors from early damage of de Kock.

Colin de Grandhomme (2-22) caught du Plessis LBW in the 12th over to offer much needed breakthrough to the hosts.

Ben Wheeler (1-49) then dismissed Amla with a short ball in the 14th over as the South African opener mistimed a pull straight to Tom Bruce at deep square leg.

AB de Villiers (26) and JP Duminy (29) added 22 runs in just nine balls for the fourth wicket stand before de Grandhomme got rid of dangerous AB in the 16th over.

Farhaan Behardien (8) failed to accelerate in the closing stages as he finally was caught at boundary by Corey Anderson off Boult's bowling in the 19th over.

Ronchi with a direct hit on the penultimate delivery caught Duminy short of the crease while attempting to steal a bye as South African innings ended on 185 for six after 20 overs.

Chasing a target of 186, the Blackcaps got off to a terrible start. Chris Morris' (2-10) double strikes in the third over saw debutante Glenn Phillips (5) dismissed cheaply while Colin Munro (0) scored a golden duck.

Before the hosts could recover from the two massive blows, skipper Kane Williamson (13) was dismissed by Andile Phehlukwayo (3-19) in the seventh over.

Anderson (6) too struggled to get his side going as in the 10th over he top-edged one straight up off Phehlukwayo's bowling only for de Kock to settle underneath it.

s the hosts were reeling at 55 for four in the 10th over, Imran Tahir (5-24) wrapped up the remaining Blackcaps batting line-up within 15 overs to give his side a massive win.

Tom Bruce (33), Luke Ronchi (0), de Grandhomme (15), Wheeler (6) and Tim Southee (20) became Tahir's victims.

Phehlukwayo dismissed Santner (5) to pick up his third wicket for the match.

Tahir was awarded the man of the match award for his fifer. The two teams will now travel to Seddon Park, Hamilton to play the first ODI of the five match series on Sunday 19th February.

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