Australia ease to six wicket win

The Australian unbeaten summer continued as they cruised to a six wicket win over the BLACKCAPS in the first Twenty20 of the National Bank Series at Westpac Stadium in Wellington.

The Australian pace attack stunned the BLACKCAPS batting line after captain Daniel Vettori won the toss and elected to bat with the home side battling through to 117 all out.

Openers David Warner and Shane Watson got the run chase off to a flyer, as they opened arms in the first three overs and hit front line bowlers Shane Bond and Daryl Tuffey for 38 runs.

Warner went for one heave to many and was bowled by Bond for 19. 

Vettori brought himself on and instantly reined things in, getting Watson out LBW for 19 and only conceding one run.

That seemed to inspire Bond who bowled pitch hitter Mitchell Johnson for one in the next over to reduce the tourists to 39 for three and turn the game. But it was short lived as David Hussey and Michael Clarke wrestled back the momentum with a 67 run stand for the fourth wicket.

Hussey eventually fell to part time spinner Martin Guptill for 46 with Clarke (18*) and Cameron White (11*) sealing the win.

Vettori was the pick of the bowling attack with one for 13 off his four overs with Bond taking two for 32.

Earlier, James Franklins top scored in a stuttering BLACKCAPS batting effort as the Australian pace attack stunned the home side. 

The much talked about Shaun Tait lived up to the hype, bowling express pace and getting the prize wicket of Brendon McCullum in the fourth ball of the match.  McCullum pushed at a ball that moved away and only succeeded in catching the edge with Brad Haddin taking a remarkable diving catch.

Mitchell Johnson then got a three in a row as he bowled Ingram for two before dismissing Ross Taylor with a dubious LBW decision for nine.  He then had Martin Guptill caught in the deep for a run-a-ball 30 to have the BLACKCAPS reeling at 54 for four.

Middle order batsmen Franklin and Gareth Hopkins then forced a valuable 50 run partnership to get the innings on back on track with the pair taking particular delight in attacking Tait, smashing 16 runs off one over.

Hopkins, who has a reputation as a batsman who works the ball around unleashed, hitting two fours and a six, before holing out off the bowling of Shane Watson for 21 off 13.

Franklin was the stand out performer with 43 from 42 deliveries including two massive sixes but the rest of the line up failed.

Man of the match Johnson ended with three for 19 with Tait, Nannes and Watson picking up two each.


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