At Basin Reserve, Wellington, March 1, 2005. Australia won by seven wickets. Toss: Australia. One-day international debuts: L. J. Hamilton; J. R. Hopes.
The beginning of Australia's run-chase vividly displayed the divergent fortunes of these teams. New Zealand, defending an inadequate 233, knew early breakthroughs were essential. With only his second delivery in international cricket, Lance Hamilton, a left-arm seamer from Central Districts making his debut at the age of 31, found the edge of Katich's bat. The ball flew waist-high into the waiting slip cordon, but Hamilton had overstepped, and the wicket would not have counted even if Astle had clung on. Instead, though, he landed heavily on his right shoulder and suffered an injury that forced him out of the final match of the series. Thereafter, there was no holding the Australians, who reached 78 for one after just ten overs. Gilchrist, standing in as captain because Ponting had a minor thigh strain, crashed his 54 from just 37 balls, though no one hung around, and Australia reached their target at a rate of almost seven an over. Hamilton never did take a wicket; his eight overs cost 67. James Hopes, an all-rounder from Queensland and the game's other debutant, fared better, dismissing McMillan and conceding 38 from his ten overs.
Man of the Match: A. C. Gilchrist.