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Ton-up Guptill, Bowlers Get New Zealand Off to Winning Start Against Bangladesh

Cricketnext Staff |February 13, 2019, 3:04 PM IST
Ton-up Guptill, Bowlers Get New Zealand Off to Winning Start Against Bangladesh

An all-round effort with the ball, followed by Martin Guptill's unbeaten 117 propelled New Zealand to an eight-wicket win over Bangladesh in the first One-Day International at McLean Park in Napier on Wednesday (February 13) and gain a 1-0 lead in the three-match series.

Reduced to 131 for 7, a gritty 62 from Mohammad Mithun and a solid 41 from Mohammad Saifuddin pushed Bangladesh to a total of 232 in 48.5 overs. In response, New Zealand rode on Guptill's 15th ODI ton, decorated with eight fours and four maximums, to comfortably chase down the total. The home team completed the chase in a mere 44.3 overs.

The Black Caps struck early when Tamim Iqbal departed for 5 in the second over bowled by Trent Boult and Liton Das soon followed, leaving Bangladesh at 19 for 2. A rattled Mushfiqur Rahim was out for 5 a few balls after a Boult bouncer struck him on the helmet.

Despite the early wickets, a defiant Soumya Sarkar played his shots, including a cracking six off Matt Henry that almost made it onto the roof of the stand. He smashed 30 off 22 balls before Henry had his revenge when he caught and bowled the batsman.

Sabbir Rahman summed up Bangladesh's batting woes when he was stumped trying to sweep Mitchell Santner to the boundary. Rahman's foot slipped as he crouched for the shot and tumbled to the ground just outside his crease and wicketkeeper Tom Latham whipped off the bails.

Bangladesh needed someone to hang around with Mithun and that's when Saifuddin chipped in. Mithun grinded out for 90 balls to complete his third ODI fifty after Bangladesh's top order fell to a combination of rash shots and accurate bowling. Meanwhile, Saifuddin provided support with a hard-fought knock as the duo added 84 runs for the eighth wicket.

It was left-arm spinner Mitchell Santner who broke the stand by getting rid of Saifuddin. Mithun couldn't survive for long thereafter and was knocked over by paceman Lockie Ferguson.

For New Zealand, Boult and Santner scalped three wickets each, while Henry and Ferguson took two wickets apiece.

In reply, Guptill and Henry Nicholls started slowly and built a solid opening partnership, destroying Bangladesh's every opportunity of making a comeback in the match. While Nicholls took a sedate approach, Guptill did not shy away from playing big shots, managing a couple of sixes through the leg side.

Just after getting to his seventh ODI fifty, Nicholls dragged an innocuous-looking Mehidy Hasan delivery back onto the stumps and had to depart for an 80-ball 53.  Kane Williamson couldn't contribute much either with Mahmudullah trapping the New Zealand captain plumb in front of the wicket for 11.

Guptill though remained unfazed with what was happening at the other end and kept playing his shots. The 32-year-old brought up his century in the 41st over with a single. This hundred will come as a huge relief for New Zealand and Guptill who has struggled to get going of late.

Ross Taylor played his role to perfection and remained unbeaten on a 49-ball 45. However, it was Guptill who brought the curtains down with a six, followed by a single off Mashrafe Mortaza's bowling.

The second ODI will be played at the Hagley Oval in Christchurch on Saturday.

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