New Zealand v West Indies, 1st ODI, Queenstown December 31, 2008

First New Zealand ODI rained out

Marc Ellison

West Indies 129 for 5 (Sarwan 38, Southee 2-33) v New Zealand - No Result
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Xavier Marshall was unbeaten on 29 when the rain came © Getty Images

Inclement weather brought about an early end to the first ODI at Queenstown with West Indies 129 for 5 after 35.4 overs. Xavier Marshall was unbeaten on 29 and Denesh Ramdin on 2. The no-result means the teams head into the second match of the series at Christchurch on Saturday locked at nil-all.

New Zealand will take some satisfaction from the game after West Indies had fought their way through to 102 for 2 before Daniel Vettori dismissed Ramnaresh Sarwan to claw their way back into the match. The team batting first has never won an ODI at the Queenstown Events Centre and West Indies were mindful of this making a very cautious start.

Sarwan and Marshall added 60 off 96 balls for the third wicket in what was a patient but important partnership for the visitors and put them in the box seat. However, Vettori's introduction to the bowling crease continued to send the already slow run-rate into further decline before Sarwan's dismissal and Tim Southee's two strikes put the hosts on top.

Sewnarine Chattergoon was first to go for the visitors after he and Chris Gayle had put together a patient 42. He dragged a ball from Mark Gillespie back onto his stumps and was out for 13 off 31 balls. Gayle followed an over later for 25 off 36 balls when he was adjudged to have edged a delivery from Kyle Mills through to Brendon McCullum and the visitors fell to 42 for 2.

Just as Sarwan looked poised for a big innings, he was caught behind by McCullum for a pleasant 38 off 57 balls, trying to cut a quicker delivery from Vettori. Brendan Nash followed shortly after for a quick-fire even dozen and then the visitors lost their third wicket for 21 runs when Kieron Pollard departed for just 3.

Southee removed both players in what was a brave fightback after taking some punishment from Sarwan in his first spell. Vettori and Southee bowled well in tandem to peg back the West Indian middle order. Vettori continued to mesmerise the visitors, with figures of 1 for 26 off eight overs before the rain came, while Southee had 2 for 33 from 7.4 overs.

"I thought it was a good day for New Zealand, they got the better of us, but having said that we did already have the runs on the board," Gayle said. West Indies were without the experienced Shivnarine Chanderpaul, who had to pull out of the game due to a hand injury. "He's our No. 1 player," Gayle added. "If you don't have Shiv in the team it's a big loss."

Marc Ellison is a freelance sports writer