KANDY – Extraordinary hitting with a cracked bat by New Zealand birthday boy Ross Taylor helped his team pile on an amazing 85 runs in 3.4 overs to set up a 110-run World Cup win over Pakistan yesterday.
Taylor was given two 27th birthday gifts – he was missed on zero and dropped on eight off Shoaib Akhtar – before unleashing some of the most incredible slugging ever inflicted on an attack in a One-Day International, never mind the World Cup.
He thumped eight fours and seven sixes in his unbeaten knock of 131 scored off 124 balls in the Group A match, as New Zealand reached 302-7 from their 50 overs.
After his unbeaten spree, Taylor revealed his bat was split.
“I cracked it in the nets a couple of days ago but it seemed to go okay today . . . hopefully the new one will be just as good,” he said. “I’ve only had it for a couple of weeks.
“One of our strengths is the power we have down at the bottom and it showed the way Nathan McCullum and Jake [Oram] batted.”
In response, Pakistan struggled from the off and at one stage were 66-6 and then 125-8.
But Abdul Razzaq, in at No 8, gave more than a modicum of respectability to the innings with a defiant 62 in a ninth-wicket stand of 66 with Umur Gul (34 not out). Pakistan were eventually all out for 192.
It was the pre-match Group A leaders’ first defeat in their fourth match. The Kiwis now take their place at the top. (Reuters)
Scoreboard in the World Cup Group A match between Pakistan and New Zealand at the Pallekele International Cricket Stadium in Kandy, Sri Lanka yesterday.
New Zealand innings
M. Guptill b Afridi 57
B. McCullum b Akhtar 6
J. How lbw b Gul 4
R. Taylor not out 131
J. Franklin lbw b Hafeez 1
S. Styris lbw b Gul 28
N. McCullumb Gul 19
J. Oram c Gul b Rehman 25
K. Mills not out 7
Extras (lb-10, w-11, nb-3) 24
Total (seven wickets – 50 overs) 302
Did not bat: D. Vettori, T. Southee
Fall of wickets: 8, 55, 112, 113, 175, 210, 295.
Bowling: Akhtar 9-0-70-1 (3nb, 3w), Rehman 10-0-60-1 (1w), Gul 10-1-32-3 (2w), Razzaq 4-0-49-0 (4w), Afridi 10-0-55-1, Hafeez 7-0-26-1 (1w).
Mohammad Hafeez lbw b Southee 5
Ahmed Shehzad lbw b Mills 10
Kamran Akmal c Taylor b Southee 8
Younus Khan b Mills 0
Misbah-ul-Haq c Styris b Southee 7
Umar Akmal c Oram b N. McCullum 38
Shahid Afridi b Oram 17
Abdul Razzaq c Oram b Styris 62
Abdur Rehman lbw b N. McCullum 1
Umar Gul not out 34
Shoaib Akhtar c N. McCullum b Styris 0
Extras (lb-6, w-4) 10
Total (all out – 41.4 overs) 192
Fall of wickets: 5, 23, 23, 23, 45, 66, 102, 125, 9-191, 10-192.
Bowling: Mills 8-1-43-2,
Southee 8-1-25-3, Oram 10-1-47-1, Franklin 5-0-26-0, N. McCullum 6-0-28-2 (1w), Styris 4.4-0-17-2
Result: New Zealand won by 110 runs.