Southee inpires BLACKCAPS to emphatic win

The dam burst in spectacular fashion as New Zealand's win drought came to an end against Pakistan in the first one-day match of the National Bank Series.

The BLACKACPS 11-match losing streak in the subcontinent last year has been well documented but new coach John Wright's reign in charge of the one-day team, and their preparations for next month's World Cup, started with the near-perfect performance in a crushing nine-wicket win in the first of six matches.

New bowling coach Allan Donald would certainly have been impressed with what he witnessed as a Tim Southee-inspired BLACKCAPS skittled Pakistan for 124, his charges practicing what he preached during the week by bowling aggressively as a unit on a Wellington Stadium pitch offering them assistance.

Then, the new opening combination Jesse Ryder and Martin Guptill made light work of the chase as the hosts cruised to their seventh successive one-day win at Wellington.

Ryder blazed away and hit to all parts of the ground in his 55 off 34 balls as he and Guptill put on 84 for the first wicket in 10 overs, before Ross Taylor joined Guptill to complete the job in the 18th over. Guptill was left unbeaten on 40 and Taylor on 23.

Earlier, Pakistan were in immediate trouble as New Zealand extracted considerable swing and movement from the drop-in surface and the tourists were quickly bundled out in the 38th over.

Interestingly, Pakistan skipper Shahid Afridi won the toss and batted, something his counterpart Daniel Vettori would also have done, with both players feeling that 240 was a par score on a pitch that looked flat.

But appearances can be deceiving at this ground, which has a recent history of producing low first innings totals.

Australia were dismissed for 148 here in 2007, England 130 a year later and West Indies 128 in 2009. Pakistan could not even match those efforts although they did eke past the lowest total at the ground, 89 by England in 2002.

Southee was near unplayable at the top of the innings as he mixed consistent outswing with the odd bit of movement both ways off the pitch. He finished with five for 33 from 9.3 overs, his first five-for at one-day level.

Canterbury quick Hamish Bennett, in his third one-day international, was also impressive.

He was the second change bowler but he generated good pace from the outset -- he was clocked consistently at about the 140kmh mark -- and also gained enough movement to be a handful. His return of three for 26 from eight overs was thoroughly deserved.

Jacob Oram's return to international cricket after knee surgery was successful, the big allrounder bowling a nagging line and also getting movement to end with two for 33 from 10.

Left-armer James Franklin was a surprise opening bowler but he proved good foil for Southee.

He was accurate without looking dangerous in his four overs and allowed Southee to attack from the northern end as Pakistan were reduced to 29 for three after 10 overs.

Southee ended his first spell of six overs with three for 16 after capturing Mohammad Hafeez caught behind for a duck, Kamran Akmal, superbly caught by Jesse Ryder at backward point for eight, and Asad Shafiq leg before wicket for four.

Shafiq can count himself unlucky as replays showed the ball was comfortably going over the stumps.

Younis Khan and Misbah-ul-Haq resumed their successful test partnership and took the score through to 57 before Bennett struck twice in two balls.

He first removed Khan for 24 with a rising delivery that beat the batsman for pace and caught the edge, then snared Umar Akmal for a first ball duck after the dangerous young batsman softly guided a short ball to Ross Taylor at first slip.

Oram made a rare blemish in the field when he dropped a sitter at long on off Vettori's bowling when Afridi was on three, but he more than made up for the mistake with the wickets of Abdul Razzaq and Abdur Rehman off consecutive balls in the 30th over as Pakistan spiralled to 96 for eight.

Bennett and Southee cleaned up the tail but only after some lusty hitting from Misbah, who again proving the tourists' best with the willow and was last man out for 50.

Brendon McCullum took five catches behind the stumps, the fourth time he has done so in a one-day international.


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