WELLINGTON - Martin Guptill's record-shattering double century and Trent Boult's four-wicket haul sent New Zealand sailing into the World Cup semi-finals as they trounced the West Indies by 143 runs on Saturday. Guptill, dropped on four by Marlon Samuels, finished on 237 not out, the highest individual score in World Cup history and the second largest one-day international innings of all time, as he led New Zealand to 393 for six in their 50 overs at Wellington Stadium.

Boult backed up the opening batsman's feat by taking four for 44 to move to the top of the tournament wicket-takers list with 19 as the West Indies folded for 250 in the 31st over. The kept up with the required run rate, reaching 200 in the 25th over, but by then they were already seven wickets down. Chris Gayle, shrugging off the effects of a long-standing back injury, cracked 61 off 33 balls, including eight of the 31 sixes in the match as batsmen on both sides plundered the short boundaries. New Zealand will now play South Africa in the first semi-final at Auckland's Eden Park on Tuesday, with fellow co-hosts Australia facing defending champions India in Sydney two days later.

New Zealand, favourites for Saturday's match after emerging unbeaten from pool play, had a rocky start when regular batting hero McCullum, who won the toss, fell cheaply for 12. But opening partner Guptill, coming into form late in the tournament, took up the challenge as he blasted his second successive century after scoring 105 against Bangladesh in New Zealand's concluding pool match.

He chewed up the West Indies attack, hitting 24 fours and 11 sixes from 163 deliveries faced as he overtook the previous best World Cup score of 215 set by Gayle earlier in this tournament against Zimbabwe. In all one-day internationals, Guptill's unbeaten 237 is second only to Rohit Sharma's 264 against Sri Lanka in Kolkata last year, and broke his own New Zealand record of 189 not out against England in Southampton in 2013.

New Zealand's closing charge saw them score 153 runs in the final 10 overs to further deflate the West Indies. Jerome Taylor, who had Guptill dropped in this first over, returned the best figures for the West Indies with three for 71, while Andre Russell took two for 96. Boult was on the money in his first over when he bowled Johnson Charles for three with his second delivery.

He followed-up with the wickets of Lendl Simmons (12), Samuels (27) and Denesh Ramdin (nought) to have four for 18 after five overs. Gayle was in a particularly ferocious mood, belting spinner Daniel Vettori out of the attack after one over which cost 21 runs. But the 36-year-old Vettori broke the Gayle-Samuels partnership when he flung his 1.91 metre (6ft 3in) frame into the air to save a six and pull off a remarkable one-handed catch on the boundary. Adam Milne, like Tim Southee and Boult, was also expensive but had the satisfaction of bowling Gayle. Corey Anderson had Darren Sammy caught behind for 27, leaving the West Indies 166 for six, before Vettori and Southee stepped in to work their way through the stubborn tail.

'Just sublime'

New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum acclaimed opener Martin Guptill's World Cup record 237 not out against West Indies on Saturday as one of the best ever seen in one-day cricket.

"Sublime, just sublime," McCullum said at the victory presentation. "I will never forget it. The innings we witnessed is probably one of the best we have seen in this format. We wanted to make a real statement on the back of Gup's innings and that's what we did with the ball and in the field. We will celebrate Gup's success, the team's success and then turn our attention to the semi-final. It's pretty hard to compare eras but certainly among the teams I have played in, this is the best. No disrespect to the legends of the past but I am pretty happy with the current team."

West Indies captain Jason Holder said Guptill, who was dropped on four from the third ball of the match, had played brilliantly. "A set batman on that pitch is dangerous. Having said that we didn't bowl our yorkers well," he added. Guptill said his innings had not quite sunk in yet.

"The boys will have a few drinks tonight and I'll probably hear all about it. In the last 10 overs it was swing from the hip and I was lucky to get a few out of the middle," he said. "We had a couple of good partnerships early which set the game up. We were trying to take each ball as it comes and just build a partnership. After I got the hundred I just thought I should probably hit a few boundaries. It was the quickest outfield I have played on here. You got value for your shots."

New Zealand pace bowler Trent Boult, who took four wickets to overhaul Australia's Mitchell Starc as the tournament's top wicket taker, said he rated Guptill's innings as the best he had seen. "It was nice to go out and bowl well as a unit in a pretty difficult situation, they were coming out there to give it everything. It's on to Auckland now and hopefully we can make it some more good memories," Boult said.

Scoreboard

New zealand

M Guptill not out    237

B McCullum c Holder b Taylor    12

K Williamson c Gayle b Russell    33

R Taylor run out    42

C Anderson c Gayle b Russell    15

G Elliott lbw b Taylor    27

L Ronchi c Benn b Taylor    9

D Vettori not out    8

EXTRAS: (lb2, w7, nb1)    10

TOTAL: (6 wkts, 50 overs)    393

FOW: 1-27, 2-89, 3-232, 4-278, 5-333, 6-365

BOWLING: Taylor 7-0-71-3; Holder 8-0-76-0; Benn 10-1-66-0; Russell 10-0-96-2; Sammy 8-0-38-0; Samuels 7-0-44-0

WEST INDIES

C Gayle b Milne    61

J Charles b Boult    3

L Simmons c Guptill b Boult    12

M Samuels c Vettori b Boult    27

D Ramdin lbw b Boult    0

J Carter b Vettori    32

D Sammy c Ronchi b Anderson    27

A Russell b Southee    20

J Holder c Anderson b Vettori    42

J Taylor c Guptill b Southee    11

S Benn not out    9

EXTRAS: (w6)    6

TOTAL: (all out, 30.3 overs)    250

FOW: 1-4, 2-27, 3-80, 4-80, 5-120, 6-166, 7-173, 8-201, 9-221, 10-250

BOWLING: Southee 8-1-82-2; Boult 10-3-44-4; Vettori 6.3-0-58-2; Milne 4-0-42-1; Anderson 2-0-24-1

TOSS: New Zealand

UMPIRES: Richard Kettleborough (ENG), Bruce Oxenford (AUS)

TV UMPIRE: Rod Tucker (AUS)

MATCH REFEREE: Chris Broad (ENG)