England 4- 149 (Luke Wright 76, Eoin Morgan 30, Doug Bracewell 1-8) beat New Zealand 6-148 (James Franklin 50, Ross Taylor 22, Steven Finn 3-16) by six wickets.
Luke Wright propelled New Zealand with a destructive match winning knock in the important match of the ICC World Twenty20 as England won the game easily.
New Zealand managed 148 runs for the loss of 6 wickets in the allotted 20 overs and England piled up 149 runs with six wickets in hand with seven deliveries to spare.
Luke Wright (England) was declared ‘Player of the match’ for his brilliant knock of 76 from just 43 balls.
The 17th match of the ICC World Twenty20 was played on Saturday, September 29, 2012, at Pallekele International Stadium.
Ross Taylor, the captain of New Zealand, won the toss and decided to bat first but lost an early wicket for just seven runs. The master blaster, Brendon McCullum, joined in next with Rob Nicol and tried to escalate the run rat. McCullum hit a couple of fours in the third over, tried to hit Steven Finn over the rope and lost his wicket for 10 runs. Nicol became the next victim after scoring 11 runs and the Black Caps were in trouble at 3-42 in 6.5 overs.
Ross Taylor and Kane Williamson gathered in the centre and tried to consolidate the innings. They crept to 67 when Williamson was caught behind by the wicketkeeper Craig Kieswetter off Danny Briggs for 17 as James Franklin dropped in next. The run rate was picked up a bit as Williamson dispatched 16 runs in the 15th over with 1 six and 1 four and added another 2 fours in the following over. The fifth wicket stand produced 40 runs in 28 deliveries when Taylor was gone for 22 runs.
James Franklin and Nathan McCullum added a quick fired 39 runs in 21 balls when the first was run out for 50 off 33 balls with 2 sixes and 4 fours. Nathan McCullum remained unbeaten for 16 off 10 deliveries with 2 lofty sixes as New Zealand scored 148 runs with four wickets in hand in 20 overs.
Steven Finn achieved his career best bowling figures of 3-16 whereas Danny Briggs and Graeme Swan shared one wicket each.
England initiated the innings with Craig Kieswetter and Alex Hales in an attacking manner as the latter collected 16 runs in the second over with 3 fours. Ross Taylor introduced Daniel Vettori in the fourth over and he made the first breakthrough on the fifth delivery when Kieswetter was clean bowled for just four runs. Nathan McCullum uprooted the stumps of the fast moving Alex Hales when he had scored 22 runs.
The young duo of Luke Wright and Eoin Morgan joined together at the crease and they changed the complexion of the game. Wright hit a six in the 11th over and Morgan followed him with 1 six and 1 four in the next over. Wright was the most aggressive of the two and continued to punish the rival bowling at will. He smashed his 3rd T20 fifty with two grand sixes in the 15th over and punished Rob Nicol for another couple of sixes in the very next over.
The duo associated 89 blistering runs in 10 mere overs when Eoin Morgan was caught by Doug Bracewell off Kyle Mills for 30 off 31 balls with 1 six and 1 four. Luke Wright was the fourth batsman who went back to the pavilion for 76 off just 43 deliveries with 5 towering sixes and even fours. England thrashed 149 runs for the loss of four wickets in 18.5 overs.
Kyle Mills, Daniel Vettori and Nathan McCullum were the only successful bowlers with one wicket each.
England won the first game out of two played by them in the Super Eight, got two points and are still in the race for the semi finals.