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|Colin de Grandhomme||3||4||0||0||75.00|
|Colin de Grandhomme||3.5||0||56||1||14.61|
New Zealand found some respite as they defeated England in the last match by a close margin of 12 runs and take the 2nd position with 2 points in their bag; they will yet again face hosts Australia, who are currently in the first place with 6 points, in the 5th match of the series at Auckland on 16th February. The Kiwis successfully defended 196 runs to emerge victorious against a determined English batting unit; they will be eager to continue with their winning momentum and cause an upset for the hosts.
Martin Guptill and Kane Williamson partnered well to post an 80-run stand for the first wicket as they set their eyes on a strong total batting first against England. While the opener scored 65 off 40, the captain led from the front with a well-made 72. All-rounder Mark Chapman contributed with 20 runs and they set 197 as the target for the opponents. However, the spinners made in-roads into the English batting line-up with Santner and Ish Sodhi taking 2 wickets apiece at regular intervals while Trent Boult and Southee combined to dismiss 3 opponents with their pace skills. The bowlers helped restrict the English to 184 and handed the team its first victory of the series.
In the opening match against the hosts, the top-order had collapsed like a pack of cards with players like Guptill, Williamson, Tom Bruce and Colin Munro getting out for single digits. Although Colin de Grandhomme put up a heroic fight by scoring 38 off 36 and Ross Taylor scored 24 runs, they could only muster 117 runs. The bowlers had a tough task to defend 96 from 15 overs as the innings got affected by rain; and they failed to do so despite a good show by pacer Boult, losing the match by 7 wickets.
The Kiwis have shown promise as they managed to outwit the English batsmen in the last game; with an in-form top order and a ruthless combination of pace and spin, they surely look to be a tough unit here.
Martin Guptill, Colin Munro, KS Williamson, Mark Chapman, Colin de Grandhomme, Tim Seifert, Ross Taylor, Ben Wheeler, TG Southee, IS Sodhi, TA Boult.
The pace attack continues to grow stronger in getting the required breakthroughs, and it delivered against the English once again as Richardson and Stanlake took 5 wickets between them in an economical manner. Andrew Tye also dismissed one opponent and helped restrict the visitors to 137. The in-form all-rounder D’Arcy Short posted an unbeaten 36 and with help from Chris Lynn and Maxwell, steered the team across the finish line with almost 6 overs to spare. They have won three games in a row and have proved to be a formidable force to reckon with.
Against the Kiwis in the opening game, Tye claimed a superb 4-23 stifling the visitors to 117 with help from Stanlake, who took 3-15 in a stupendous manner. Spinners Ashton Agar and Zampa also claimed a wicket each, and with the reduced target of 96 from 15 overs, the batsmen hurried down to the finish line. Chris Lynn and Maxwell each scored 40+ runs and they stabilize the middle-order well.
Australia has a good mix of young talent and experienced seniors, who have delivered to perfection in all departments of the game; they could come back here to inflict more wounds on their neighbours.
David Warner, Aaron Finch, D'Arcy Short, Glenn Maxwell, Chris Lynn, Marcus Stoinis, Alex Carey, Ashton Agar, KW Richardson, Billy Stanlake, AJ Tye.
The Kiwis’ team morale is boosted right now after their win over England; they have plenty of resources to keep the momentum going. Although Australia has consistently performed well, we feel that New Zealand with the home advantage are favourites to win.
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