New Zealand survived a thriller in the first one-day against Australia on Monday. Marcus Stoinis, the rookie all-rounder playing just his 2nd ODI, scored 146 which included 11 sixes and nine fours, a record ODI score for an Australian number seven batsman and Stoinis took three crucial wickets during the encounter and helped Australia to reach near to the victory at Auckland’s Eden Park.
Australia’s top and middle order flopped as they were struggling at 54 for five. the New Zealand batters had already proved that pitch was good to bat on by piling 286 on board but Australia in try to finish the game in a hurry found themselves at a deeper trouble.
Travis Head (5) and Peter Handscomb (4) in attempt to clear the short Eden Park boundaries ended up playing rash shorts. However, the experienced campaigners like stand-in captain Aaron Finch (4), Shaun Marsh (16) and Glenn Maxwell (20) disappointed spectators.
Without exposing Hazlewood for a single delievery the Stoinis managed to retain strike at the end of every over during the 54 run last wicket partnership.
The tourists left David Warner and Usman Khawaja out of the squad to protect them for the upcoming Test series in India, then lost captain Steve Smith and wicketkeeper-batsman Matthew Wade to injury.
But the players expected to offer leadership in their absence failed to step up and the Australians crumbled before Stoinis arrived.
For black caps Neil Groom’s 73, combined with 61 from Guptill and 48 from Neesham, proved enough for a defend-able total. The left arm off spinner tricked Aussie’s to bag 3 wickets as Trent Boult and Ferguson managed to clinch 2 each. The experienced bowler Tim Southee kept it tight along side Colin Munro and both caught 1 scalps each.
The second ODI will be in Napier on Thursday, with the third in Hamilton on Sunday. As the New Zealand will be thrilled after this win they will look forward to take revenge for the whitewash in December.