An exciting workout for the BLACKCAPS first-up

Brutal BLACKCAPS hit ground running in India

A truly destructive display of batting first up saw 14 sixes fly out of Wankhede Stadium en route to a colossal 226/4.  Martin Guptill (41) set the tone, but it was the explosiveness of Colin Munro (67 off 34) and Corey Anderson (60* off 29) that stole the show. The left-hand brutes belted 92 off 41 balls while batting together and totalled 12 sixes in total between them. Memorable!

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The bowlers had a tough act to follow, and proceeded to put in a classy performance. Tim Southee, Anderson and Adam Milne asked the early questions and were backed up by Mitch McClenaghan and the spinners as the Sri Lankan run chase never got going, eventually finishing 152/7.

Corey Anderson was in slaying style. Photosport

Man of the Match (unofficially): Corey Anderson. Generating a strike rate of 206.89 in a thunderous knock, he propelled the scorecard past 200 before being retired. He was only needed for two overs at the top, but zipped the ball around in an impressive opening spell which included the ball of the match.

Key moment: Four sixes in a row from Munro off the start of the 10th over put the Sri Lanka bowlers under substantial pressure. With two balls remaining there was a chance to record the perfect over, but the BLACKCAPS could only manage a single and a four to record 29 off that particular set of six.



Shot of the match: When the BLACKCAPS hit a total of 14 sixes, you'd think it'd be pretty tough to pick the shot of the match — surprisingly (and luckily for the writer) one shot from Munro clearly reigned supreme. Facing the right-arm off-spin of Sachithra Senanyake, quick as a flash Munro had got into a position to reverse sweep and made tremendous connection, sending the ball deep into the second tier of the stand over backward point. Unorthodox, but very aesthetically pleasing to the eye of a BLACKCAPS fan.

Ball of the match: easy. An absolute screamer from Anderson. Pitched full and swinging in violently, he ripped out the leg stump of the dangerous Tilikaratne Dilshan early in the Sri Lanka innings, keeping the BLACKCAPS firmly on the front foot.

In the field: Senanayake had plenty of time to think about this one. With Martin Guptill on 41 and starting to accelerate, the opener sent one high into the Mumbai sky. The kettle was put on and the water boiled before the ball reached Senanayake who took a composed catch. Held his nerve and the ball well.

Quirk: usually when a match starts at 7.30pm, the the lights will be warmed up and operational by the time the teams arrive. Not so in Mumbai. The teams warmed up in somewhat gloomy conditions, before someone flicked the switch 30 minutes before the players took the field. Honourable effort to conserve power?

Next up: one from one so far, but the BLACKCAPS still have their second and final warm-up match against England on Saturday. Same venue and another opportunity to fine tune ahead of facing India in the opening match of the tournament. Mouth-watering.

With Thanks To

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