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Brendon McCullum hails New Zealand team for their fine showing against India at Hamilton

Brendon McCullum © Getty Images
Brendon McCullum has led New Zealand to a 2-0 series lead against India in the ongoing ODI series © Getty Images (File Photo)

Hamilton: Jan 22, 2014

Skipper Brendon McCullum lauded his boys for doing well under pressure as they beat India by 15 runs via the Duckworth Lewis Method and took a 2-0 lead in the five-match series on Wednesday.

“Yeah, it was a good performance. It was outstanding to get the total we did, and that too in a reduced game. We needed all those runs against India’s packed batting,” said McCullum.

New Zealand, put in by India, scored 271 for seven in 42 overs in a restricted game that was held up twice due to rain for nearly two hours. Kane Williamson was the top scorer with 77, and ex-skipper Ross Taylor’s 57, his second consecutive half-century in the series.

Set a rain-revised daunting target of 297 in 42 overs, India riding on some stellar show by Virat Kohli (78) and Dhoni (56) came tantalisingly close and reached 277 for nine in 41.3 overs as rain interrupted again for the third time. Later, the victory margin was revised to 15 runs in favour of New Zealand.

Fast bowler Tim Southee got four for 72 while Corey Anderson got three for 67. Anderson also did well with the bat blasting 44 off 17 balls.
McCullum praised Williamson and Taylor for their aggressive batting.

“Prior to the weather I thought the batting was outstanding with Ross and Kane. Then Corey came back in today and showed just how much he has learned at this level to give us that momentum going into the second innings,” said McCullum.

The skipper was happy with the way the team has performed in the two close encounters against India.

“Against the Indian team you know how dangerous their batting is. The team has really stepped up and performed well over these last two games. At the end of the day, under pressure, the guys did really well,” he said.

Praising Anderson, McCullum said: “In big moments he is really stepping up (Corey), and the way he came back with the ball showed his ability. Really pleased with the guys’ performance, and I know we will get better and better as the series wears on.”

Williamson, who was adjudged Man of the Match, said his role is to anchor the innings in the middle-order.

“Its going alright. Just playing the anchoring role in the middle after the big boys get dismissed. It has been quite good and a complete performance from the team. I tried to contribute as much as possible in both of these games. It was great to keep the momentum going for the home team, and we look forward to our next match,” he said.

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