Kiwi’s overpower Lions
Kane Williamson’s fifth ODI century and Luke Ronchi’s important cameo at the end helped New Zealand chase down 277 with four wickets in hand to go 2-1 up in the fourth ODI at the Saxton Oval in Nelson on Tuesday.
Kane Williamson’s fifth ODI century and important partnerships with Grant Elliott and Corey Anderson gave New Zealand a four-wicket win in Nelson. © AFP
Sri Lanka chose to bat in the first ODI played at the new venue and they lost Dimuth Karunaratne cheaply for 5. Kumar Sangakkara (76) and Mahela Jayawardene (94) got Sri Lanka on the right track and they were looking at a big total. New Zealand pulled things back at the end by taking six wickets for 31 runs. Mitchell McClenaghan (2/58) and Tim Southee (3/59) pulled things back and Sri Lanka ended up on 276.
The hosts started off poorly when they lost Martin Guptill (20), Brendon McCullum (11) and Ross Taylor (8) in quick succession. However, Kane Williamson, who had scored six fifties in the last eight games and missed two games due to a shoulder injury, stitched a 88-run stand with Grant Elliott. The duo looked good until Jeevan Mendis snapped up Elliott for 44. Williamson continued the good work with Corey Anderson and the 79-run partnership got the home side closer.
Williamson went past his century but he and Anderson departed in quick succession. With 25 runs needed off 18 balls, the match was evenly poised but Ronchi slammed 24 runs off Thisara Perera, including three sixes and a four to help New Zealand get over the line with 11 balls to spare.
The next match of the series will take place on January 23 at the University Oval in Dunedin.
Sri Lanka 276 all out in 49 overs (Mahela Jayawardene 94, Kumar Sangakkara 76, Tim Southee 3/59) lost to New Zealand 280/6 in 48.1 overs (Kane Williamson 103, Corey Anderson 47, Rangana Herath 1/39) by four wickets.