New Zealand v West Indies, 1st ODI, Auckland December 26, 2013

WI 1-0 up after two-wicket win


West Indies 157 for 8 (Sammy 43*, McClenaghan 5-58)New Zealand 156 (Brendon McCullum 51, Nathan McCullum 47, Bravo 4-44)
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

West Indies' search for their first win of the New Zealand tour ended at Eden Park in Auckland as the visitors edged past the home side in a low-scoring thriller to take lead in the five-match ODI series. Mitchell McClenaghan's maiden five-wicket haul in ODIs led New Zealand's fightback after they had been bowled out for 156, but Darren Sammy smashed an unbeaten 27-ball 43 to take West Indies over the line.

West Indies needed 61 when Sammy arrived at the crease at the fall of the sixth wicket and used the short boundaries to his advantage. Yet solidity was hard to come by as New Zealand kept chipping away with wickets. Sammy had added 25 runs with Denesh Ramdin, who scored just 2, when McClenaghan struck for the fifth time to remove Ramdin. Thirty-six runs and three wickets in hand; it was not a question of overs as West Indies were scoring at a quick rate.

Jason Holder, who has been impressive with the bat in his short career, thwarted New Zealand's hopes in another obdurate stand of 26 runs with Sammy that brought West Indies to within 10 runs of the target. After his dismissal, Sammy didn't let New Zealand get any further sniff, finishing the match with a six and a four in McClenaghan's last over - the 28th of the innings.

Regular wickets were a feature of both teams' batting performance. McClenaghan's swing and good pace did the same damage at the top of the West Indies order, much like Ravi Rampaul and Holder reduced New Zealand to 32 for 4.

The difference was that McClenaghan didn't receive similar support from his team-mates. In his first spell of six overs, he picked up four West Indies wickets; Powell left a straight delivery to be bowled, Charles was beaten by an inswinger, Darren Bravo drove one straight to cover, while Dwayne Bravo was trapped lbw by another perfect inswinger.

Lendl Simmons, who scored 34, and Narsingh Deonarine had some respite as McClenaghan took a break and the two stitched a critical 34-run stand. West Indies were close enough, even though the two were dismissed in quick succession, for Sammy to complete the chase in one strong leap.

Rampaul and Co were similarly efficient in the morning, but apart from Sammy, there were hardly any weaklinks in their attack. All the bowlers got the ball to jag either way, while Sunil Narine extracted fair amount of zip from the pacy drop-in pitch, the nature of which had been not clear before the match. It was one of the reasons why West Indies had opted to bowl and it worked in their favour.

New Zealand's top four could manage only 13 runs among them as Rampaul and Holder bowled with control not seen in the West Indies bowlers during the Test series. Then Bravo brought himself on and ensured the bottom half of the New Zealand line-up had all their escape routes shut as he picked up four wickets.

Brendon McCullum put up a strong resistance, going past 5000 ODI runs during his 51, but he didn't receive any support from the other batsmen as West Indies mounted pressure. On a ground with short boundaries, fours were hard to come by - the first came in the 11th over, bowled by Sammy, when McCullum pulled a four and followed it with a six next ball - and there was no breathing space for the batsmen. Corey Anderson and Luke Ronchi hit aerial shots straight to the fielders, summing up the morning for New Zealand.

The slide had started at the start of the innings. Rampaul dismissed New Zealand's comeback men Jesse Ryder and Martin Guptill in his first two overs, but the big wicket of Ross Taylor came through a run-out. There was no looking back from there as Dwayne Bravo picked up four wickets to reduce New Zealand to 112 for 9.

Nathan McCullum delayed the end of innings till the 43rd over with an enterprising 47, adroitly farming the strike in a 44-run last-wicket stand during which Mitchell McClenaghan scored only three. Nathan McCullum was the last batsman to be dismissed and ensured New Zealand had just enough to put up a fight.

Devashish Fuloria is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • charlie on December 27, 2013, 19:25 GMT

    Thanks to Roland Cox FOR the mention of Sammy' s improved batting !! They seem to be too many haters to notice this . I have seen a turn around in his performance with the bat ,evidenced in his stroke play , shot selection , positive approach and mental toughness ;something which others should take as an example . Are the other " super- stars " too super to follow suit ?

  • SCOTT on December 27, 2013, 6:23 GMT

    Went to the game and enjoyed it even though it wasn't a lot of runs. Good to see the Maccullum brothers bat well, but the rest were a bit disappointing although I think most batting line ups would have struggled on that pitch. Agree with previous comments that we are missing another proven strike bowler ie: boult or southee. We can't expect Mitch to carry all of that burden.Hopefully this will be addressed for 2015.

  • Android on December 27, 2013, 4:27 GMT

    @Thom Jones

    apart from Shillingford and Narine you would find Rampaul and Roach battingwise would be Ramdin maybe Powell and Edwards. Lendel cetainly in ODI, maybe even tests. But hey, if Sammy is can prove himself a viable#6 in tests, I'll support him

  • Jon on December 27, 2013, 2:52 GMT

    Should be a hard fought series, but I'm betting New Zealand will win all of the remaining ODIs and take the series 4-1.

  • Dummy4 on December 27, 2013, 2:02 GMT

    I don't understand how people keep calling for sammy to be dropped from the test team. I guess I watch a different game cause what I have been seeing for the past few years is that eventhough he is not worldclass he sure is a better performer with bat and ball that most of the so called top order specialist batsmen and specialist bowlers. apart from young bravo and shiv which other batsman in that test team scores more consistently than bravo? and apart from shillingford and Narine which bowler bowls better than sammy excluding in the test team?

  • Umar on December 27, 2013, 1:42 GMT

    Sammy batted well. I liked his approach.

  • Dummy on December 27, 2013, 0:06 GMT

    Mrs rally windies, stop hating on mr Sammy! It just shows you have no love for the games and just enjoy bashing, why don't you complain about batsmen who suppose to do their job and constantly play the fool, both in test and odi. That's the problem, batsmen not applying themselves. Use your big head and you will see that.

  • adit on December 26, 2013, 23:59 GMT

    Congrats WI and thanks Sammy. Shows that if WI play real hard they can win matches. Sammy has proved again that he is a good one day player. He did well to clobber the ball and win the match. He is not a test material and should not be in the test team let alone its captain. He should be the captain of the one day and the T20 squad because this is the type of cricket he is good at. I wish WI well and hope they maintain the wining streak but must confess that I am not confident that this will happen as the team does not show the attitude of wanting to win - lacks the mental toughness and mindset to win.

  • Roy on December 26, 2013, 21:58 GMT

    Congrats to WI ODI team, Sammy did not perform in test lately, but won the one match in India and here, also he came in and scored in the final 20/20 in Sri Lanka, I don't like him as a test captain at the moment, but he is good in the ODI and 20/20 format! Powell and Deonarine should sit for the ODI, Go West Indies !

  • o on December 26, 2013, 21:48 GMT

    1.Edwards 2.Simmons 3.Bravo 4.Powell 5.DJ Bravo 6.Ramdin/Charles 7.Sammy 8.Holder 9.Miller 10.Rampaul 11.Narine would be my 11 of this squad for remaining games.

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