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Kiwis edge out Australia in T20 thriller

New Zealand won a thrilling Twenty20 international against Australia in Christchurch after an extra “super over”. The Black Caps’ win tied the two-match series.

cricket Updated: Mar 01, 2010 01:46 IST

New Zealand won a thrilling Twenty20 international against Australia in Christchurch after an extra “super over”. The Black Caps’ win tied the two-match series.

With both sides having made 214 the one-over tie-break was required.

Tim Southee, who had bowled superbly at the death for New Zealand, restricted Australia, who used Cameron White, David Warner and Brad Haddin, to six for one. Australia’s Shaun Tait then bowled two wides as the man of the match, Brendon McCullum, and Martin Guptill made nine for no loss in New Zealand’s over.

McCullum’s unbeaten 116 spearheaded New Zealand’s innings. For a while the target of 215 looked like it would be too much for Australia, but 47 from Haddin and half-centuries from Michael Clarke and White left the game in the balance. Southee produced a fine spell of bowling at the end, with White and Clarke unable to get the 12 runs required from the final over.

McCullum attacked from the off — his hundred came in 50 balls, matching Chris Gayle’s world record, set against South Africa in September 2007, but the wicketkeeper could not knock the West Indian off the top of the highest Twenty20 scores list, finishing one run shy.

After the first-over departure of his fellow opener, Peter Ingram, he maintained his aggressive approach, with Guptill turning over the strike. The pair put on 52 for the second wicket before Guptill holed out off Ryan Harris for 17.

New Zealand then lost three wickets for 15 runs in four overs as Clarke introduced his slower bowlers.

But Gareth Hopkins and McCullum then hit 68 runs in 30 balls. Hopkins hit two sixes and three fours in his 17-ball 36 before he stepped on to his wicket while sending a Nannes delivery to the rope.

Australia’s reply began well, with Warner quick to punish Southee. But after reaching 20 off 10 balls he holed out to Southee off Shane Bond. Haddin and Clarke added 73 for the second wicket before Haddin pulled James Franklin’s first ball to Ingram at deep midwicket. Clarke brought up his 50 off just 31 balls.