With one semi-final clash already set up, New Zealand and West Indies were in contention for the last spot in the semis with the winner of this game going on to face South Africa on March 24. No surprises there, as hosts New Zealand blew away the Carribeans.
Batting first, the New Zealanders posted a massive 393/6 in 50 overs which is the highest total in a World Cup knockout game. Opening batsman Martin Guptill scored a colossal 237* from 163 balls and registered the highest individual score in a World cup. The target proved to be too much for the West Indies as they were bowled out for 250 in 30.3 overs. New Zealand won by 143 runs and set up a semi-final clash against the Proteas.
McCullum fails to fire, Martin Guptill and Kane Williamson set platform:
New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum won the toss and elected to bat first. The skipper could not get his team to an explosive start as he was dismissed for 12. Kane Williamson came in at no. 3 and added 62 runs for the second wicket along with Guptill. Williamson (33) too failed to capitalize on a great start as he too made his way back in the 16th over. Ross Taylor finally overcame his shaky run of form, as he supported Martin Guptill well through a patient knock of 42 off 61 balls. They were involved in a 143-run stand before Taylor was run out, owing to a miscommunication between the two.
Martin Guptill shifts to top-gear after scoring ton:
Martin Guptill got to his second consecutive hundred off 111 balls and New Zealand were in for a big total. The right hander went berserk after reaching his ton and pummeled the West Indian bowlers to all parts of the ground. He went on to score an unbeaten 237 off just 163 balls, which means he took just over 50 balls to score his next 137 runs. Some handy cameos from Grant Elliott, Luke Ronchi and Daniel Vettori saw the Kiwis post a massive 393 on the board.
Trent Boult sizzles in the middle of another Gaylestorm:
Looking at the target, it was necessary for the West Indian batsman to chase the target with a twenty 20 approach. But left arm seamer Trent Boult had other plans for his opponents. He struck early in the 2nd over as he knocked off Johnson Charles’ off stump. Later he produced an outside edge of Lendl Simmons’ blade and Martin Guptill at 2nd slip safely pouched the ball. Chris Gayle and Marlon Samuels shifted the momentum in their favour as they scored at a rate of over 8 runs an over.
Brendon Mccullum introduced Daniel Vettori into the attack, hoping that the left-arm spinner would slow the run rate down. The plan backfired as Chris Gayle slammed his IPL coach for three sixes in a row. Marlon Samuels too joined the party as he plundered runs off Tim Southee in the next over. Samuels however could not carry on for long as Daniel Vettori pulled off a screamer at third man. Samuels upper-cut a short wide ball from Boult which went sailing towards the third man boundary. Vettori leapt to full-capacity and took a one-handed catch to dash West Indian hopes. Dinesh Ramdin too departed in the same over as he was dismissed for a duck.
Gayle falls, New Zealand into semis:
As wickets kept falling, Chris Gayle did not bother to change his style or game. Despite a severe strain in his back, Gayle continued to dispatch the bowlers for sixes over mid-wicket and long on. He got to his fifty in 23 balls but was eventually clean bowled by Adam Milne while on 61. Gayle’s knock included 3 fours and 8 sixes and this could possibly be his last world cup innings.
The middle and lower order West Indian batsmen failed to play a long innings. They came, hit a couple of boundaries, and walked back to the hut. So while they were well ahead of the required run rate the West Indians kept losing wickets regularly, which did not help their cause. Jason Holder at the fag end of the innings, showed some resistance with his knock of 42 from 26 balls. They were eventually bowled out for 250, with almost 20 overs left to play. Martin Guptill was adjudged man of the match for his brilliant double hundred.
New Zealand 393/6 (Martin Guptill 237*, Ross Taylor 42, Jerome Taylor 3-71) beat West Indies 250/10 (Chris Gayle 61, Jason Holder 42, Trent Boult 4-44) by 143 runs.