Benson & Hedges World Cup 1991-92, qualifying match


Toss: New Zealand.

New Zealand avenged their recent Test defeats with a record seventh successive World Cup win, and ended England's run of 17 matches without defeat since leaving home. England were severely depleted, with Gooch and Fairbrother unfit, Lewis unable to bowl, and Defreitas and Reeve carrying injuries. Lamb played his first game of the tournament, but Pringle became a new casualty, departing in mid-over with damaged ribs. Crowe, relieved by the omission of New Zealand's bogey-man Tufnell, gave Patel the new ball, and was rewarded with a five-over spell which conceded only seven runs and removed Botham; even Jones's rather occasional offspin merited nine overs and picked up two wickets. England's best effort came from Stewart and Hick, who added 70 in 14 overs. But on Patel's return Stewart swept to square leg, and only 105 came from the last 30. Hick edged to Greatbatch, keeping wicket for Ian Smith, who had migraine. The remaining batsmen found the boundary only twice, and the hands of deep fielders all too often.

Greatbatch had no such difficulties. He smashed 35 from 37 balls, and took New Zealand to 64 by the 13th over. Then Jones (13 fours) and Crowe, driving and cutting, put on 108 in 23 overs. Their victory confirmed that New Zealand would head the qualifying table, with England second.

Man of the Match: A. H. Jones. Attendance: 13,612.

© John Wisden & Co