First One-Day International

Australia v New Zealand

Peter English

At Colonial Stadium, Melbourne, December 5, 2004 (day/night). New Zealand won by four wickets. Toss: New Zealand.

Beaten by New Zealand for the first time in eight one-day internationals, Australia did not enjoy the first in-season match under the Telstra Dome's retractable roof, which stayed firmly shut though it was a fine evening. Many of the spectators were unhappy even before the result. "The wind should dictate the bowling. The light should influence the batsman. In here we don't know if it's day or night, hot or cold. I'm part of some controlled experiment," grumbled one. "Where's the smell of sunscreen? Where's the breeze? Where's the atmosphere?" asked another. Australia had appeared untouchable when Gilchrist, with 68 from 54 balls, raced them to 113 in the 20th over. But Cairns and Vettori instigated a collapse of four wickets for ten. Australia then used three spinners in Hogg, Symonds and Lehmann to take advantage of a slow pitch, but Lee, playing only because McGrath and Gillespie were rested, was the stand-out, removing Fleming with the second ball of the innings, which topped the 150kph mark. With three overs to go, New Zealand were still 32 short. But the 48th over, bowled by Kasprowicz, went for 22, including a leg-side fulltoss that cost five wides. Marshall and McCullum took them to victory with two balls to spare.

Man of the Match: H. J. H. Marshall. Attendance: 30,753.

© John Wisden & Co