New Zealand v Zimbabwe, 3rd ODI, Napier February 9, 2012

Guptill all tangled up

ESPNcricinfo presents the Plays of the day of the third ODI between New Zealand and Zimbabwe, in Napier

The innovation
When Martin Guptill deposited Elton Chigumbura into the straight stand Brendon Taylor sent mid-off back to the boundary and brought fine leg in. Without missing a beat, Guptill shaped to play the over-the-shoulder scoop next ball, but was surprised by a delivery shorter than he expected. He went through with the shot, turning it into a part-pull, part-shovel, part-evasive manoeuvre and collected four for his troubles.

The drop - 1
Zimbabwe have been atrocious in the field for virtually the entire tour, and they began the third one-dayer in similar fashion. The New Zealand openers were threatening to attack early, when Brian Vitori banged one in and induced a top edge from Rob Nicol. Going backwards from square leg, Tino Mawoyo ran a tad too far, and in his attempts to lean back and take the catch with his fingers pointed upwards, he managed only to get a wrist to it and down it went.

The drop - 2
Brendon McCullum was destroyer-in-chief during the final overs, but he too had a let-off, long before the boundaries began to flow from his blade. In an attempt to reach fifty with a six, McCullum mistimed a straight hit off Vitori and offered a simple running catch to Regis Chakabva at long-off. This too was predictably shelled and McCullum added 60 more runs at a strike rate of 189.

The tangle
For the third time in the series, Martin Guptill bossed the Zimbabwe bowlers, before finding a way to get out with a hundred beckoning. Napier provided the most bizarre dismissal of the lot, when he was stumped down the leg side off a Ray Price wide. With the ball spinning past his thigh pad, Guptill glanced back and stepped out of his crease having decided Tatenda Taibu had not collected the ball. No sooner than he had done so, he saw Taibu did in fact have the ball, but the keeper was struggling to collect it properly himself. Knotting himself up in an attempt to get back, Guptill almost did the splits and hit the ground. Taibu eventually took off the bails, leaving Guptill frustrated and a tad embarrassed.

The full tosses

Vitori may have been unlucky, with two chances going down off his bowling, but he only had himself to blame for some hapless death bowling. In the 45th of the innings, he bowled three successive thigh-high full tosses to Nathan McCullum who sent them all sailing over the fence. Having also had a previous ball in the over dispatched for four, Vitori's eighth over disappeared for 26.

The foot race

With Zimbabwe seemingly not attempting the target of 373, there was little need to take quick singles at 14 for no loss after five overs. Tino Mawoyo, though, hadn't got the memo at the non-striker's end. When Stuart Matsikenyeri defended one down to his feet, Tom Latham was swooping in from a close midwicket but Mawoyo chose to test the fielder's speed and called his partner through for a run. Despite an almighty dive, Mawoyo came up a metre short, as Latham proved there are white men who can win a sprint.

Andrew Fernando writes for The Pigeon and has a column here