Friday, February 25, 2011

World Cup 2011 : Australia vs New Zealand...

This match was billed to be a cracker - Australia against New Zealand, but it finally ended in a whimper. Both had won their first match rather convincingly, & their age old rivalry down under has been a folklore over the years.
Ponting won the toss & put the Kiwis to bat. McCullum started in whirlwind fashion, as always, but again, like in most of the times, he got out trying to up the scoring. 16 runs off 12 deliveries would make a good strike rate, but not enough for the team. Wickets tumbled thereafter quite regularly, & by the 17th over, New Zealand were tottering at a dismal 73 for 6. Nathan McCullum, Vettori & How put up some resistance & managed to take the total to 206 finally. Certainly a below par performance. Its surprising to see such a good one day batting side on paper, crumble so easily. I would say, lack of application & resolve. They have been quite pathetic over the last few months.
For the Aussies, the bowling was sharp & accurate. Lee was right on the target, but had only one wicket to show. However, Johnson picked up 4 & Tait claimed 3 wickets.

In reply, Australia started fluently with both Haddin & Watson getting into the groove. The bowling did not have enough bite & the target was simple. By the end of 10 overs, the Aussies were sitting pretty at 74 for no loss. The batting by these two continued to prosper & both the openers registered their half centuries in even time. First to go was Haddin, against the run of play. He holed out to Franklin off Bennett for a well made 55. The score read 133 for 1. Probably, his dismissal got Watson distracted as well, & two balls later, he was bowled by a slower. The score reading 133 for 2......two big wickets in one over, but maybe too late in the day for the Kiwis. Next on crease were the Captain Ponting & his deputy Clarke. Ponting however didn't last long & was stupidly stumped out for 12. However there were no more rude shocks for the Aussies, & they scampered home to win the match with 7 wickets & 96 balls to spare. It was a resounding win in the end.

Man of the Match : Mitchell Johnson for his figures of 4 wickets for 33 runs.