Friday, 28 January 2022

Warner century lifts Australia to 378-5 against NZ in second ODI

CANBERRA: David Warner hit his sixth one-day century of the year to lead Australia to an imposing 378 for five after being sent into bat by New Zealand in the second Chappell-Hadlee Trophy game in Canberra on Tuesday. Warner smashed 119 off 115 balls to lead a bevy of big scores by the Australians at the bat-friendly Manuka Oval. The Black Caps must win to keep alive their hopes of retaining the trophy after losing by 68 runs in Sydney on Sunday. But New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson’s gamble to send the Australians into bat back-fired spectacularly when the home side feasted on a perfect batting wicket. Skipper Steve Smith hit 72 off 76 balls, newcomer Travis Head plundered 57 off 32 balls and Mitchell Marsh bludgeoned seven sixes in a unbeaten 76 off just 40 balls to give the Black Caps a hefty target to chase down under lights in the evening session. The pugnacious Warner raised his 10th ODI century off 101 balls to continue his outstanding form with the white ball. It was his third ton in his last five ODI innings and his first against New Zealand. Only three other Australian batsmen have scored more hundreds in ODIs – Ricky Ponting (30), Mark Waugh (18) and Adam Gilchrist (16). Warner was out to a low catch from Williamson at cover off medium-pacer Colin de Grandhomme in the 37th over, ending a 145-run partnership with Smith. Smith followed up his career highest ODI score of 164 in Sydney with 72.

The Australian skipper, who was struck a painful blow in the groin by a de Grandhomme delivery on 56, sliced to Mitchell Santner at deep point when he was on top of the New Zealand bowlers. Head hit his second half-century of the series before he was caught off Tim Southee. Aaron Finch, dropped two balls before by wicketkeeper BJ Watling, was bowled attempting to sweep spinner Santner for 19 in the 13th over, ending a 68-run opening stand with Warner. Australia made one change, bringing in all-rounder James Faulkner for leg-spinner Adam Zampa, while there was still no place for Glenn Maxwell. New Zealand brought back experienced paceman Southee for Lockie Ferguson.

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