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32nd Match, Group 2, Dubai (DICS), November 03, 2021, ICC Men's T20 World Cup
(20 ov, T:173) 156/5

New Zealand won by 16 runs

Player Of The Match
93 (56)
Cricinfo's MVP
143.8 ptsImpact List

Guptill brilliance helps New Zealand see off steely Scotland

Opener's 93 sets up big batting finish; Scotland chase fizzles after brief dominance

Firdose Moonda
Firdose Moonda
Martin Guptill scored a 56-ball 93, New Zealand vs Scotland, T20 World Cup, Group 2, Dubai, November 3, 2021

Martin Guptill scored a 56-ball 93  •  Alex Davidson/Getty Images

New Zealand gained two valuable points with a solid win over Scotland, who applied themselves better than they did in the first two Super 12 fixtures. It means New Zealand join Afghanistan on four points in Group 2, which setS up an intriguing clash between the two teams on Sunday. Before that, Afghanistan have to play India, the result of which could also be crucial in determining who progresses to the semi-final.
On a fresh pitch in Dubai, described by the television commentators as the best for run-scoring in the tournament so far, New Zealand posted 172 for 5, thanks largely to a 105-run fourth-wicket stand between Martin Guptill and Glenn Phillips. Guptill went on to score a 50-ball 93.
Scotland's chase was steady, and even threatening in parts, but struggled to keep up with the required run-rate. They reached their 50 in 6.2 overs and needed 97 runs off the last 10. Mitchell Santner and Tim Southee were miserly but Scotland stayed in the hunt until close to the end. An unbeaten 50-run stand between Michael Leask and Chris Greaves kept them in with a chance until the last over but New Zealand's experience held out.
Martin's milestones
Guptill anchored and then accelerated New Zealand's innings and enjoyed several achievements along the way. He became the second batter to reach 3000 T20I runs when he sent an Alasdair Evans leg-stump half-volley over backward square leg for six. Guptill is second only to Virat Kohli in T20I runs, and is only 156 runs behind. He also became the batter with the most sixes in this format, when he slog-swept Chris Greaves onto the top tier of the stands. That was Guptill's 150th six in T20Is and measured 102 metres, one short of the biggest in the tournament so far. Guptill shared in a 105-run stand with Phillips which formed the spine of New Zealand's total, and was in a good position to bring up his third T20I hundred but was out when chipped Brad Wheal to long-on to end what looked like an exhausting innings.
Sharif's double-strike in the powerplay
Safyaan Sharif pulled Scotland back from their worst start in this tournament - an opening over that cost 13 runs - when he gave away only a single in the second over. Then, he changed ends and pushed them ahead with a double strike in the fifth over, which was one wide away from giving Scotland their first maiden over at this competition. With the first ball of his second over, Sharif had Daryl Mitchell trapped on the back pad with a delivery that looked a touch too high at first glance. Ahsan Raza raised his finger and Mitchell reviewed but ball-tracking showed the ball tickling the bails and the decision was upheld. Four balls later, Sharif bagged one of the wickets of his career when Kane Williamson followed a delivery headed down the leg side, Matthew Cross took a diving catch to his left and Williamson walked. New Zealand were 36 for 2, which became 52 for 3 when Devon Conway was dismissed for 1 and in some trouble.
Post-powerplay strangle
Scotland applied a squeeze through spin in the four overs after the Powerplay to put the breaks on New Zealand. Mark Watt and Chris Greaves gave away just 18 runs in 24 balls between overs 6-10, with only one boundary. Watt also got rid of Conway in that time to continue a magical run at this T20 World Cup. He has taken at least one wicket in all the nine matches he has played at the men's T20 World Cup. And he has been miserly too. Watt has conceded less than 24 runs in all but his debut game where he went for 30 runs.
Maiden and then the most
The 13th maiden over at this competition came from Adam Milne, who bowled the fourth over of Scotland's chase. All six of his deliveries were back of a length and speedy. He reached up to 147kph and beat Matthew Cross three times in the over to complete only his second run-less over in his format. His first was vs Pakistan in 2016. But Milne did not have the final say on the Powerplay after Cross got his own back in the sixth over when he hit five successive fours, and should have had a sixth. Cross pulled the first two balls before picking the knuckle ball and driving it through the covers. He got a top-edge as he tried to pull the fourth - a bouncer - and it went over the wicket-keeper's head for four, and then settled to slice the fifth ball past gully. The final delivery was back of a length and could have been swatted through mid-wicket but Cross inside-edged onto his pad. It's only the second time we've seen five fours in an over in the men's T20I World Cup after Jacques Kallis' against Scotland's Jan Stander, in 2009.

Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo's South Africa correspondent

Win Probability
NZ 100%
100%50%100%NZ InningsSCOT Innings

Over 20 • SCOT 156/5

New Zealand won by 16 runs
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