Tuesday, March 8, 2011

World Cup 2011 : New Zealand vs Pakistan...

New Zealand took on Pakistan at Pallekele Stadium, Sri Lanka, knowing fully well, that a loss here could upset their World Cup campaign ahead. When Vetorri won the toss, he was clear about batting first & putting up a total.
As Mucullum & Guptill walked into the middle, Shoaib started the bowling for Pakistan. McCullum smote the 3rd ball of that match for a huge six, but the very next delivery knocked his off stump, as the men in green huddled in delight. The danger man was gone, without much damage. How & Guptill pushed the score to 55 in the 13th over, when  How got out LBW to Umar Gul, for a scratchy 4. Taylor came in next, & looked set for a big score. Guptill completed his fifty & the got out, with the score reading 112 for 3 in the 29th over. Franklin fell immediately after, as Ross Taylor took charge. With Styris, Nathan  & Oram lending him the  much needed support, Taylor made the Pakistani attack pay for loose deliveries, as runs started to leak. Taylor remained not out till the end for a brilliant 131 in just 124 deliveries, including 7 over boundaries, as the total reached a formidable 302 for 7. The 47th over by Shoaib Akhtar was murdered by Taylor for 28runs. Every bowler, barring Umar Gul was hit all over the park. For the 7th wicket partnership between Oram & Taylor, 50 runs came in just 15 deliveries. Gul had impressive figures of 3 for 32 in his 10 overs. Kamran behind the stumps had a horrendous day.
Reply by Pakistan was simply disastrous, as wickets tumbled like nine pins. By the 18th over it was 66 for 6. Against a 300 + target to chase, the batting on display was unbelievably brittle. Some late order long handle by Abdul Razzaq brought some semblance to the score, as it went past 100 & then 150. Razzaq ended with a fighting 62 & Umar Gul contributed a meaningful 34 unbeaten runs, but it was all over as Pakistan innings folded for a paltry 192 all out. Southee took 3 wickets, while, Mills, Nathan & Styris claimed 2 apiece.
This Pakistani team is very good on a day & equally bad the other. Very very unpredictable.

Man of the Match : Ross Taylor for his brilliant 131 unbeaten runs.