Brendon McCullum was dismissed for a two-ball duck off the bowling of Dhammika Prasad © Getty Images
Brendon McCullum was dismissed for a two-ball duck off the bowling of Dhammika Prasad © Getty Images

New Zealand managed to put up another challenging total when they finished on a score of 315 for the loss of eight wickets during the sixth game of the seven-match One-Day International (ODI) series against Sri Lanka at the University Oval in Dunedin on Sunday. While Grant Elliott remained unbeaten on a score of 22 from 14 balls, the charge was led mainly by Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor, who were dismissed on scores of 97 and 96 respectively.

New Zealand won the toss and chose to bat, with the intent of utilising the ideal batting conditions to setup a big total on the board. Skipper Brendon McCullum however, could not make much of a contribution towards that intent, as he was dismissed for a two-ball duck in the eighth ball of the match, courtesy a brilliant catch by Thisara Perera. Martin Guptill and Kane Williamson joined hands to see the Sri Lankan pace duo of Dhammika Prasad and Suranga Lakmal. Guptill departed on a score of 28 to leave New Zealand at 59 for two.

The foundation for the strong total was built during the third-wicket partnership between Williamson and Taylor, which was worth 117 runs. Williamson, who was dismissed on a score of 97 from 95 balls, hit eight boundaries and two sixes during his stay at the crease. He was unfortunate enough to be run out while attempting to take a second run.

Corey Anderson decided to attack the Lankan bowlers from the word ‘go’. He hit five fours and a six during his quickfire innings of 40 from 28 deliveries, before falling prey to one of Rangana Herath‘s cleverer deliveries. The 78-run stand between Taylor and Anderson was the icing on the cake during New Zealand’s onslaught of the visitors. The Kiwis finished on a bigger total, had it not been for the late fall of wickets.

Taylor had a fate identical to Williamson when he was dismissed on a score of 96 in the 104th delivery that he faced. There were a lot of cheers around the University Oval when Luke Ronchi and Grant Elliott were at the crease once again, with the blazing memories of the previous game still fresh in the minds of the spectators. It turned out to be a disappointment for both Ronchi and the fans as he was caught by Dimuth Karunaratne in the cover region. Daniel Vettori and Kyle Mills were both run out as New Zealand ended their pursuit at 315.

It was another average day in the office for the Lankan bowling attack, with Prasad being the only bowler to take more than a wicket in the innings, conceding 59 runs in the process. Suranga Lakmal had the best economy among the bowlers, which was a shade over four. The Sri Lankan batsman now need to go all guns blazing if they are to prevent New Zealand from going 4-1 up and claiming the trophy.

 

Brief scores:

New Zealand 315 for 8 in 50 overs (Kane Williamson 97, Ross Taylor 95, Corey Anderson 40; Dhammika Prasad 2 for 59) vs Sri Lanka.

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