drives firmly through the off side and they come back for a couple to wrap up a victory which was comfortable in the end
Thanks for your patience tonight as our scoring system had a meltdown, apologies for the delay at times, fingers crossed that everything goes to plan in a few days' time. This is Avi Singh signing off on behalf of Andrew Fernando doing match reports, and Kanishkaa Balachandran, Venkat Raghav, Robin Abrahams and Dustin Silgardo who all tirelessly worked away on the desk to help fix the issues tonight. Do join us on Tuesday night for the final T20I from Seddon Park in Hamilton. Until then, bye for now.
Positives for Zimbabwe to take from the game but if they are to pull off an upset in their final match of the tour at Hamilton on Tuesday, their fielding will have to pick up considerably and of course, Guptill will still be standing in their way. New Zealand were tested a little more tonight, which they wouldn't have seen as the worst thing in the long run as they try to prepare for the formidable South Africans who are arriving in the country tonight and tomorrow.
Brendan Taylor: "Nice pitch, good to see Hamilton get back into form and set us up with Taibu. 159 was competitive but we knew we were 20-30 short with those short, straight boundaries. It was definitely a notch up from the ODIs and we fought harder today. The fielding was frustrating again, but we have to give Guptill credit. We will work hard at our game and hopefully be ready for Tuesday."
Brendon McCullum: "Great to see Guptill in such form, the bowlers stood up today. I thought 180-190 was a par score, the spinners did really well with short, sharp spells. Good to have so many guys in our team who can bowl spin, offers us variation. Outstanding wicket and Martin and Kane played well on it, short and straight is pretty inviting. All the Auckland boys are pretty happy with their day's work, I'm sure Colin will get more chances in the next game."
Martin Guptill: "Mark Perham always prepares belters and it's nice to bat on such wickets. Haven't really had a hit in the last two days so nice to get out there and play the way I did."
Zimbabwe fought better tonight but they couldn't find a way around Martin Guptill and he proved too good for the visitors as New Zealand win by 7 wickets.
goes back and slams a pull way back over the midwicket boundary, looking to finish this off quickly
he defends into the off side and sets off, Shingi picks up and hurls down the stumps at the bowler's end with Kane short by a few inches
flicked off the pads and into the midwicket fence
drives a full toss to long-off
flicked to long-on
goes back and plays into the deep on the off side
worked wide of midwicket
goes back and pulls into the leg side where the fielder on the circle messes up and Jarvis on the boundary saves his blushes with a brave dive on the boundary
too easy for Guptill who is looking sublime again, thumps Meth over his head one bounce into the sightscreen
again full and worked away through the leg side
full toss is played straight to cover
drives down to long-off
doesn't miss this time, hit well back into the South Stand with ferocity after it was pitched up in the slot
outside off and he misses the attempted swing over the bowler's head
Wilfred Hickenshire: "Funny how the only two NZ players who chose County Cricket over IPL last year and this year, are pulling us out of a hole in a 20/20..."
pulls off the back foot through square leg
fired in down leg after he backed away and he squeezes it backward of square
plays off the back foot towards the cover sweeper