Riding on some awe-inspiring performances from Daniel Vettori and Brendon McCullum, New Zealand fine-tuned their ultra-attacking brand of cricket as they defeated Afghanistan by 6 wickets at Napier to seal their fifth straight win in ICC World Cup 2015.
Chasing a modest target of 187, skipper McCullum got New Zealand off to a flying start as along with Martin Guptill, he put on 53 runs for the first wicket inside the first 6 overs before losing his wicket to offie Mohammad Nabi. McCullum scored 42 off just 19 balls with 6 fours and a six. Guptill and Kane Williamson took New Zealand close to the target with their 58-run partnership for the second wicket before Williamson, who scored 33, became the victim of Shapoor Zadran. Guptill then brought up his half-century and Ross Taylor played a steady unbeaten knock of 24 to win the match for New Zealand in 36.1 overs.
Earlier after choosing to bat, Afghanistan were off to a worst possible start as their openers Javed Ahmadi and Usman Ghani inside the first 3 overs. New Zealand bowlers lead by Daniel Vettori struck at regular intervals to leave Afghanistan reeling at 59/6 in 20 overs before Samiullah Shenwari and Najibullah Zadran saved them from the blushes with their 86-run partnership. Both scored their fifties but as Najibullah got out, Trent Boult and Corey Anderson wrapped the tail in quick time as Afghanistan innings ended at 186 in 47.4 overs. Vettori was the pick of the bowlers for New Zealand as he ended up with the figures of 4-18 in his 10 overs. He also bowled 4 maidens.
Brief Scores: Afghanistan 186 (Samiullah 54, Najibullah 56, Vettori 4-18) lost to New Zealand 188/4 (Guptill 57, McCullum 42, Shapoor 1-45) by 6 wickets