Napier, Feb.29 (ANI): South Africa on Wednesday cantered past New Zealand by six wickets in the second one-day cricket international, clinching the series with a game to spare.
A promising New Zealand start dissolved into an awful middle order collapse. From 163 for the loss of two wickets, the Kiwis collapsed to 230 all out, against some brutal pace bowling, led by Morne Morkel's career-best 5-38.
Chasing New Zealand's inadequate total, opener Hashim Amla, stroked 92 off 107 balls to see South Africa home with 11.4 overs to spare at Napier's McLean Park, before a crowd of 7461, stuff.co.nz reports.
Amla, with an ODI average of 56, cruised to his 16th half-century off 51 balls with nine fours. Driving straight and punching through the off side, it was another exhibition in the mould of captain AB de Villiers in Wellington.
New Zealand's recalled duo, paceman Andy McKay (0-45) and leg-spinner Tarun Nethula (2-60), got the bulk of the work and had moments of encouragement.
McKay was generally fast and straight, and trapped JP Duminy lbw for two but Aleem Dar's decision was overturned on replay. Nethula should have had Amla caught for 61 but Rob Nicol shelled the simple chance at long off. Nethula eventually snared Duminy for 43, and Amla, caught behind.
Earlier, De Villiers' eyes lit up when he won the toss on a rock hard pitch which may have reminded him of home.
But McCullum (85) and Martin Guptill (58) crafted a second wicket stand of 107 as they dodged and weaved some thunderbolts from Morkel and Dale Steyn, who was a mixed bag but generally on target. Pace of 145-150kmh has rarely caused New Zealand's batsman comfort.
In his 200th ODI, McCullum's effort was admirable for a second consecutive innings, but, again, departed when in full flight and short of the dominant century his team desperately needed.
McCullum faced 96 balls and hit 11 fours and two sixes. But, trying for his third six he picked out Justin Ontong on the square leg boundary. An angry swish of his bat and a face like thunder, and McCullum summed it up. (ANI)
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