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Napier ODI: New Zealand edge past Australia

March 03, 2010 16:48 IST


Ross Taylor had a winning start to his career as a captain as New Zealand eked out a two-wicket win over trans-Tasman tivals Australia in a closely contested opening one-day international at Napier on Wednesday.

Chasing 276 to win, the Black Cpas reached home with just four balls to spare at the MacLean Park to take a 1-0 lead in the Chappell-Hadlee Trophy.

Scott Styris, not in the starting line up at the start, came into the side as a replacement for Daniel Vettori - who opted out with a stiff neck - and utilised the opportunity to the optimum scoring an unbeaten 49 off just 34 balls to lead the hosts' to what in the end was a comfortable win.

Taylor played his captain's role to perfection hitting an aggressive 70 to help New Zealand reach a comfortable position from where Styris could take over.

Brendon McCullum (45) and Peter Ingram (40), who shared a 75-run partnership for the opening wicket, were the other major contributors to the Black Caps' total.

Earlier, Michael Hussey made 59, and put on a 72-run partnership for the sixth wicket with James Hopes (33) to ensure the Australian total a semblance of respectability.

Shane Watson (45), Ricky Ponting (44), Michael Clarke (22) and Cameron White (33) were the other major contributors in the Australian innings.