New Zealand beat West Indies to set up semifinal clash with South Africa

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Martin Guptill’s highest individual World Cup knock paved the way for a convincing 143-run victory for New Zealand against the West Indies as the co-hosts set up a semifinal clash with South Africa.

Chasing a mammoth 394-run target, the West Indies were bowled out for 250 runs in 30.3 overs with Kiwi pacer Trent Boult picking up 4 wickets in Wellington on Saturday.

New Zealand dismissed West Indies dangerman Chris Gayle for 61 with pacer Adam Milne bowling the dangerous left-hander off the inside edge after a typically pugnacious 33-ball innings from the Jamaican that featured two fours and eight sixes.

Gayle’s departure left the West Indies struggling at 120/5.

Earlier, Guptill bludgeoned his way to the highest individual World Cup knock as New Zealander rode on the opener’s swashbuckling 237 to record an imposing 393/6.

Guptill scored his runs off 163 balls, becoming the first New Zealander to post a double century in ODIs and the fifth in the world. He was unbeaten when the innings ended.

As he smacked Andre Russell to get to the coveted landmark, Chris Gayle, the only other double centurion in World Cup, came and congratulated Guptill at the Westpac stadium.

Reaching his 100 off 111, the last 52 balls brought Guptill a staggering 137 runs.

He smashed 24 fours and 11 sixes after New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum opted to bat.

Such was Guptill’s onslaught that the hosts reached from 300 to 350 in just 16 balls. The batsman got to his double ton off 152 balls with the help of 21 fours and eight sixes.

Earlier luck was on Guptill’s side as Marlon Samuels couldn’t hold on to a low chance at short-leg in the third ball of the innings bowled by Jerome Taylor.

There was, however, no looking back after that reprieve as Guptill anchored the innings with the others playing around him with a mix of caution and aggression.

While skipper Brendon McCullum, the dangerman in the Kiwi line-up, perished early, Guptill held the innings together and added 62 runs for the second wicket with Kane Williamson (33).

After getting his eye in, Williamson was lured into going for a false shot by Andre Russell’s slower delivery, bringing in Taylor to the crease.

While the West Indies captain Jason Holder tried different bowling options, the two experienced Kiwi batsmen looked at ease milking runs during a third-wicket partnership that yielded the Black Caps 143 runs in 22.3 overs.

After getting to his seventh ODI century with a single to long-on, Guptill upped the ante and smashed the West Indies to all parts of the ground. He reached his ton in 111 balls.

The 28-year-old launched into Darren Sammy for a massive six to start the onslaught, collected two fours and a six off Taylor, and kept finding the ropes against the likes of Holder and Suleiman Benn to reach his 150 off 135 balls.

What set Guptill’s knock apart in the age of slam bang hitting was that he scored his runs playing orthodox cricketing shots, and that at a good rate.

Just before that, Taylor (42) was run out owing to a misunderstanding, but the batsman did not seem to mind with Guptill in such fine fettle. Taylor found the fence two times during his 61-ball knock.

Meanwhile, Guptill smashed 27 runs in the 45th over bowled by Holder, clobbering the medium pacer for three sixes and a boundary.

The first of the three maximums helped him go past Glenn Turner as the highest scorer in World Cup match by a New Zealander. Turner had scored 171 against East Africa in the inaugural edition of the tournament in 1975.

Guptill then picked up 18 off Russell to propel New Zealand to 328 for four. The last over went for 20 with Guptill hitting two more sixes and a four. Before that, Taylor seventh and the innings’ 49th over gave New Zealand 16 runs.

Of all the West Indies bowlers, Russell was the worst sufferer conceding 96 runs in 10 overs.

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Posted on March 21, 2015, in Sri Lanka. Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on New Zealand beat West Indies to set up semifinal clash with South Africa.

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