New Zealand v Australia, 2nd ODI, Wellington February 6, 2016

Warner, Marsh ace Australia's 282 chase


Australia 283 for 6 (Warner 98, Marsh 69*, Santner 3-47) beat New Zealand 281 for 9 (Williamson 60, Santner 45*, Hazlewood 3-61) by four wickets
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

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Highlights - Australia chase 282 to level series

Mitchell Marsh and John Hastings kept their heads after others before them had lost their own to wrestle Australia back into the Chappell-Hadlee series with a four-wicket victory over New Zealand in Wellington.

After David Warner and the recalled Usman Khawaja motored to an opening stand of 122 in pursuit of 282, a slide of 6 for 75 had put Brendon McCullum's team within touching distance of the series trophy. But Marsh's power and Hastings' composure were enough to reel in the remainder of the target and provide a valuable steadying win for the tourists, after five consecutive defeats across both limited-overs formats.

That Australia had been chasing a target of fewer than 300 was down largely to a much improved performance with the ball and in the field. Marsh and Hastings made key contributions there also, while the legspinner Adam Zampa bowled well in his first international match to claim the wickets of Kane Williamson and Grant Elliott.

Williamson made a smooth 60, but it was a late innings partnership of 61 from 44 balls between Mitchell Santner and Adam Milne that added heft to the innings after the Australians had claimed regular wickets throughout the afternoon. Santner's three wickets included those of Khawaja and Warner, either side of two wickets in as many balls by the emerging Matt Henry.

In his three previous ODI appearances, Khawaja had only ever hit one boundary, and as if to make up for lost time, his first ball from Trent Boult sped through square leg to start correcting that ledger. Warner was no less eager to get bat on ball, and together they formed an ideal union of artistry and aggression.

Khawaja's placement was deft with the odd boundary, epitomised by one pull shot that sent the square leg umpire Billy Bowden sprawling in his 200th ODI appearance. Warner's power was demonstrated when Santner dropped short and was shovelled shudderingly beyond the rope at long on.

So comfortable did Khawaja seem that it was a surprise to everyone in the stadium when he played too soon at Santner and offered a return catch via the front edge of the bat. As wickets can often do, this one brought a marked change to momentum, and New Zealand's bowlers again homed in effectively on Steven Smith.

Having bowled Smith off the inside edge at Eden Park, Henry coaxed a deflection off the outside edge this time, which Luke Ronchi caught wonderfully diving where first slip might have been. Next ball, George Bailey was late and crooked on a fast nip-backer, leaving Glenn Maxwell to survive the hat-trick ball but drag Boult fretfully onto the stumps 11 runs later.

Through all this Warner remained imperious, surging to the cusp of a century. But Santner's persistence was rewarded when he landed a ball in line and found enough turn to beat Warner's forward stroke. The LBW appeal was vehement and the review, after Bowden rejected it, successful. Australia's stocks sank further when Matthew Wade failed to clear the outstretched left hand of Milne at deep midwicket.

At 197 for 6, New Zealand could sense victory, but Marsh found a composed partner in Hastings to whittle down the target. They were helped by the fact that Warner and Khawaja had left little pressure on the run rate, and by the occasional New Zealand fielding error. Marsh's power was at times redolent of Andrew Flintoff, another player given to plonking his front foot down the wicket and swinging hard.

Hastings stepped up admirably in the absence of James Faulkner, working the ball around sensibly with the odd angry shot, guiding the younger Marsh towards the target. By the end, they had succeeded in playing so securely that the match was won in circumstances that felt anti-climactic - largely because Marsh and Hastings played so well.

Australia had made three changes to the team that was given a hiding in Auckland, dropping Shaun Marsh for Khawaja, while Boland came in for Kane Richardson due to back soreness, and the debutant Zampa was called up in place of Faulkner. Zampa had his ODI cap presented to him by Allan Border, and his chosen shirt number, 63, was in tribute to Phillip Hughes.

New Zealand were unchanged, in a match where they could complete a series victory over Australia for the first time since 2007. McCullum led a typically hyperactive start to proceedings, clattering 28 from 12 balls including a six off each of the Australian pacemen.

Boland's very first ball was sent flying back over his head and into the sight screen, but he responded well by pulling back his length and being rewarded when McCullum charged again and was bowled. That wicket scotched much of the early momentum, even if Martin Guptill and Williamson moved along smoothly enough for the next 11 overs.

It was Marsh who broke the stand, prompting a miscue from Guptill when he tried to force the pace a little more. The chance swirled out towards deep cover, where Khawaja showed excellent judgment to claim a catch more difficult than it appeared. Marsh had another victim when Henry Nicholls, called up to the Test team this week, wafted at a wide delivery: New Zealand had stalled.

Williamson and Elliott formed another useful stand without ever looking in total command. This was in part due to the thoughtful work of Zampa, who varied his pace artfully to keep the batsmen guessing. His reward would come in consecutive overs, as first Williamson then Elliott pushed catches to cover trying to manufacture boundaries.

That put New Zealand five down, and regular wickets from there prevented the hosts from pulling together a total of the dimensions they managed at Eden Park. Santner and Milne pulled back some of the ground in the closing overs, but the tourists could be happier with their effort. Ultimately the task would prove just within the reach of Australia's batting order, leaving all to play for in Hamilton on Monday.

Daniel Brettig is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. @danbrettig

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • world on February 8, 2016, 8:45 GMT

    pattinson ,cummins,hazzlewood,siddle are all over hyped they cant play 2 matches in a row without getting injured

  • Simon on February 8, 2016, 3:16 GMT

    AussieSam on February 7, 2016, 6:38 GMT, Of course I'm being genuine! I want to see the best possible side walk for the Aussies at any time. Why would I leave out Maxwells' poor performances in the T20's? He was picked to play for Australia and is supposedly a short form gun! When the Aussies need their middle order to fire he invariably goes missing. The fact he can score a 'survival innings' every now and again is the reason for the frustration that his position in the team doesn't produce consistently. He's shown in the past he can play straight and score with cricket shots, but he isn't prepared to admit playing like that is when he hits his highest scores. He should be embarrassed that Hastings saw the team home in game 2. What does amuse me is when people try to defend his 'bowling'. He's had his run, got a World Cup medal, it's now time for a player who'll play for the team.

  • rob on February 7, 2016, 9:22 GMT

    @ BradmanBestEver : I like it but what's the deal with Watto? I remember him retiring from tests but I don't think he mentioned anything about ODI's. Why aren't they picking him?

  • Sanjay on February 7, 2016, 9:22 GMT

    Rather than appreciating a good fight back by Australia after the walloping in Auckland there continues to be the negative commentary about Steve Smith just because he didn't score in the game. Of course there is also the usual Kohli is the best commentary. Unfortunately it reflects poorly on those who write the comments and shows your lack of love and knowledge of the game. Well done Australia.

  • Peter on February 7, 2016, 8:57 GMT

    Regarding our top 6 for the ODIs, I reckon we need Watto in the team to open with Warner which would give us another bowling option. Get rid of George, put Usman at 1st drop and Smith at 2nd. That top order has a nicer feel about it for mine. Then Maxwell's silver hammer at 5 followed the Marshmeister at 6.

  • rob on February 7, 2016, 8:41 GMT

    Shika Darwan has a second home in Melbourne. Seriously, is he not one of the coolest looking dudes to ever pick up a cricket bat or what?

  • Terry on February 7, 2016, 7:47 GMT

    I understood Kohli was interested in that Sydney house to support his citizenship application. Welcome Aussie Vizza. I guess he can bat 4 & Smith move to 5.

  • Matt on February 7, 2016, 7:40 GMT

    Thoughts on a few issues raised below. I'd be happy with Nevill as keeper for ODIs too. Wade was stiff batting this match though. Warner is a great player in all formats and would probably be happy not to be talked about too much for a change. Smith will eventually prove he is a quality player in all formats and conditions. So will Maxwell I think eventually. Players do 99% but I reckon the calming influence of Boof being back might have been a 1% bonus for us in that chase after losing a few wickets.

  • Sam on February 7, 2016, 6:38 GMT

    @INSULT_2_INJURY: not sure if you are being completely genuine here or not but I think you'll find that if you leave out Maxwell's poor outing in the T20 series, Maxwell had actually done quite well recently. His stats for the ODI series vs India are very good: 169 runs at 56.33 and a SR of 126.11. And it is an even more impressive batting performance when you consider that he was under a lot of pressure in that match winning 96 in Melbourne, that he helped guide the team home with a sensible partnership with Bailey in Brisbane, and that he provided some much needed impetus at the end of our 1st innings in Canberra (hitting 41 off 20). He also did well with the ball. Despite not getting any wickets in his relatively few overs, he managed to concede less than 6 an over on absolute roads against traditionally brilliant players of spin. And to top it off he is probably the best fielder in the side. I don't see how you can even consider dropping him.

  • Mike on February 7, 2016, 5:52 GMT

    And it is equally sad to see the same old posts from the same old folks coming on here to bash Oz, win lose or draw..... It really is tiring, given that most of these folks are simply angry because Australia has won the match.....For most anti Aussies here, they just hate Oz winning fairly and squarely. That is the bottom line !

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