LONDON   -    New Zealand will have to wait to seal a spot in the ICC World Cup 2019 semifinal as they went down by 86 runs against Australia at Lord’s on Saturday (June 29). Set a tricky 244, New Zealand’s batting crumbled under pressure as they were shot down for just 157. They still, however, have a good chance of ending in the top four if they win their game against England. If India beat England on Sunday, New Zealand will go through with India leaving England in some doubt.

When New Zealand do sit down to reflect after the game, it’ll be the crucial moments that left them hurting. They were mercurial on the field - oscillating between stunning to mediocre. Usman Khawaja and Alex Carey helped Australia build a score after they were reduced to 92 for 5. Cary (71) and Khawaja (88 off 129) scored 107 for the sixth wicket before Trent Boult picked up the second hat-trick of this World Cup when he dismissed Khawaja, Mitchell Starc and Jason Behrendorff in the final over.

The damage, however, had been done by then. Khawaja had been dropped by Martin Guptill at second slip even before he had opened his account. Guptill was also guilty of dropping Aaron Finch in the second over of the contest. New Zealand, though, had made a superb start with the ball. Boult had nullified the Finch threat and then Lockie Ferguson put the side on top as he bounced out David Warner and Steve Smith, who fell to a brilliant one-handed stunner by Guptill at leg gully.

Marcus Stoinis picked up three boundaries in the first 11 deliveries he faced and then fell as the boundaries dried up. Jimmy Neesham’s second blow, after Stoinis, was a big one as Maxwell pulled and ended up playing the ball back to the bowler. Australia were wobbling and were desperate with more than 28 overs to go. Khawaja dug deep and took it slow while Carey’s positive intent gave his partner the cushion to play at a comfortable pace.

Both batsmen were dropped as Tom Latham too was guilty of being lethargic. Carey eventually fell in the 43rd over as he found Guptill at cover off Williamson. Khawaja did kick on after the 45th over but the big flourish never arrived. Boult bowled Khawaja and then produced two brilliant yorkers to Starc and Behrendorff. While Starc lost his poles, there was more drama as Behrendorff reviewed the lbw call only to lose the review.

With a tricky chase ahead of them, New Zealand were guilty of adopting an over-cautious approach.

Henry Nicholls, in for Colin Munro, just wasn’t able to get going and struggled for 20 deliveries before was caught behind down the leg side. Guptill’s patchy day came to an end as he became Behrendorff’s second victim after being pinged in front. Williamson and Taylor scored 55 for the third wicket to bring the chase back on track in the next 11.5 overs as the New Zealand captain crossed 6000 ODI runs.

Williamson’s dismissal triggered a collapse as the fatalities of the middle-order were exposed thoroughly. Williamson guided a Starc off-cutter straight to the ‘keeper while Taylor’s top edge off Pat Cummins was swallowed by Carey. Latham, who had averaged just a shade over six before this game in the tournament, made 14 but a slow-moving pace as the asking rate soared. Colin de Grandhomme was handed a golden duck while Neesham huffed and puffed to nine off 22 before falling to Lyon.

With an inevitable loss charging towards them, New Zealand would have wanted to reduce the margin of defeat but Starc’s thunderbolts wrapped up things quickly.

 

 

Scorecard

AUSTRALIA:

D Warner c Latham b Ferguson 16

A Finch lbw b Boult 8

U Khawaja b Boult 88

S Smith c Guptill b Ferguson 5

M Stoinis c Latham b Neesham 21

G Maxwell c & b Neesham 1

A Carey c Guptill b Williamson 71

P Cummins not out 23

M Starc b Boult 0

J Behrendorff lbw b Boult 0

N Lyon not out 0

EXTRAS: (lb3, w7) 10

TOTAL: (9 wkts; 50 overs) 243

FOW: 1-15, 2-38, 3-46, 4-81, 5-92, 6-199, 7-243, 8-243, 9-243

BOWLING: T Boult 10-1-51-4, C de Grandhomme 8-1-29-0, L Ferguson 10-0-49-2, I Sodhi 6-0-35-0, J Neesham 6-0-28-2, M Santner 3-0-23-0, K Williamson 7-0-25-1

NEW ZEALAND:

M Guptill lbw b Behrendorff 20

H Nicholls c Carey b Behrendorff 8

K Williamson c Carey b Starc 40

R Taylor c Carey b Cummins 30

T Latham c Smith b Starc 14

C de Grandhomme c Khawaja b Smith 0

J Neesham c & b Lyon 9

M Santner c Behrendorff b Starc 12

I Sodhi lbw b Starc 5

L Ferguson b Starc 0

T Boult not out 2

EXTRAS: (b4, lb3, w10) 17

TOTAL: (all out; 43.4 overs) 157

FOW: 1-29, 2-42, 3-97, 4-118, 5-118, 6-125, 7-131, 8-141, 9-144, 10-157

BOWLING: J Behrendorff 9-0-31-2, M Starc 9.4-1-26-5, P Cummins 6-1-14-1, N Lyon 10-0-36-1, S Smith 2-0-6-1, A Finch 1-0-7-0, M Stoinis 2-0-12-0, G Maxwell 4-0-18-0

TOSS: Australia

MAN OF MATCH: Alex Carey

UMPIRES: J Wilson, R Illingworth

TV UMPIRE: R Kettleborough

MATCH REFEREE: Sir Richie Richardson