Everyone expected yesterday’s match between New Zealand and Australia to be entertaining but what conspired was quite unexpected. The Kiwis were favourites and they did win the match, but the way they did was unpredicted. Even though the start to Australia’s innings was quite reasonable when they were 80 for 1, that completely changed. They were all out for 151 which is very uncharacteristic of the Australian team. They could not even manage a decent score with the likes of Warner, Smith and Clarke. It seemed like an easy win for the Kiwis and that is what their approach was when McCullum came into bat. With yet another smashing half century from him, the remaining target was a piece of cake. Mitchell Starc had other ideas. He bowled one of the best spells of his career to date and took Australia very near to an exceptional win. Someone from the Kiwis had to respond to the pressure applied by Clarke. With just 6 runs to win, there were five men in the slip cordon and Australia were a nick away from winning the match. The first ball delivered by Cummins was dispatched for a six over long on by Williamson. New Zealand should have won the match considering the target they were chasing, but that six by Williamson was sort of an anti-climax. Australia was all over New Zealand. The calmness with which Williamson sealed the match was extraordinary. The winning six will be remembered and talked about for a while. At the end the day belonged to New Zealand but Australia recovered from an unrecoverable situation and saved themselves from a humiliating defeat.

–Shaan Tahir

shantahir@gmail.com