Record falls in Black Caps triumph

Published: Friday 23rd January 2015 by The News Editor

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Grant Elliott and Luke Ronchi shared a world-record sixth-wicket partnership to propel New Zealand to victory over Sri Lanka in Dunedin.

The pair put on a staggering unbroken 267 for the new one-day international best as the Black Caps reached 360 for five, and a stunned Sri Lanka could only reply with 252 all out, losing by 108 runs.

The tourists had looked in firm control when they reduced New Zealand to 93 for five, but Elliott went on to make an unbeaten 104 and wicketkeeper Ronchi cracked a spectacular 170 not out from just 99 balls faced, nine of which he powered away for sixes.

Sri Lanka fast bowler Suranga Lakmal went for 93 without reward from the 10 overs he sent down, taking the brunt of the extreme punishment.

In their response, opener Tillakaratne Dilshan scored a commendable 116 for Sri Lanka, but as a team they did not come close.

New Zealand lead the seven-match series 3-1 with two matches to play.

Elliott and Ronchi shared the man-of-the-match prize, the International Cricket Council said.

New Zealand’s innings had begun inauspiciously, even troublingly, as Martin Guptill fell to a first-ball duck, regular dangerman Brendon McCullum went for 25 and Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor also departed cheaply.

When Corey Anderson went on his way for eight, alarm bells were ringing and Sri Lanka sensed the chance of a series-levelling win, but the Black Caps’ saviour pair then set about undoing all of their visitors’ positive work.

Elliott played more within himself than Ronchi, but still scored at better than run-a-ball rate.

Ronchi, though, was devastating as he scored his first international hundred.

The man who began his career in Australia colours, before switching allegiance, plundered 14 fours to complement his stack of sixes as Sri Lanka were left to watch the ball repeatedly hop over the ropes.

Lahiru Thirimanne and Dilshan looked to build a platform from which to attack as Sri Lanka began their reply, and combined for a useful first-wicket partnership of 93.

Thirimanne went for 45, Kumar Sangakkara soon followed, and the innings imploded after Mahela Jayawardene was third man down with the team tally on 211. Dilshan was next on his way back to the dressing room.

Trent Boult tore through the middle order for figures of four for 44, and Tim Southee finished the match in the 44th over with two wickets in four balls.

Published: Friday 23rd January 2015 by The News Editor

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