New Zealand into Super Eights as more rain strikes

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> New Zealand beat Zimbabwe by seven runs on the Duckworth/Lewis method in their rain-affected World Twenty20 match on Tuesday.

Updated: May 05, 2010 09:18 IST
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Providence, Guyana:

New Zealand qualified for the second round Super Eights of the World Twenty20 with a seven-run victory over Zimbabwe in a rain-shortened match on Tuesday.

The Black Caps shot out Zimbabwe for just 84 and were then ahead of the par score they required under the Duckworth-Lewis method when rain cut short their reply at 36 for one in 8.1 overs and meant no further play was possible.

Victory meant New Zealand qualified out of Group B alongside Sri Lanka, who defeated Zimbabwe in another rain-affected match here on Monday.

Earlier, off-spinner Nathan McCullum took three wickets for 16 runs, including three for one in an over, and medium-pacer Scott Styris three for five in two overs as Zimbabwe collapsed in spectacular fashion.

"We fought back well in the middle stages with Nathan and Scott Styris," said New Zealand captain Daniel Vettori, who won the toss and fielded.

"We knew it would be a difficult track to bat with Zimbabwe having so many spinners and we did well to come back in the middle overs."

In a game they had to win to have a chance of getting into the second phase, Zimbabwe - who'd beaten defending champions Pakistan and Australia in the warm-ups, - made a relatively sound start to be 58 for one in the seventh over when opener Hamilton Masakadza was run out.

Andy Blignaut followed soon afterwards, bowled trying to slog sweep left-arm spinner Vettori.

And any hope of a Zimbabwe fightback was then wrecked by a dramatic ninth over, McCullum's third.

The bowler who'd starred by hitting the winning six in New Zealand's opening two-wicket victory over Sri Lanka, had the dangerous Elton Chigumbura (three), caught at long-on off the over's first ball.

Two balls later, Charles Coventry was out for nought offering a simple caught and bowled chance after being beaten in the flight by a slower delivery.

And off the over's last ball Craig Ervine (one), drawn out of his crease and then beaten by a ball that dipped and turned, was stumped by wicketkeeper Gareth Hopkins.

Zimbabwe, who'd been 62 for three at the start of the over, were 63 for six when it finished.

"It is disappointing," said Zimbabwe captain Prosper Utseya. "We had a good start but we didn't play well in the middle. There is potential no doubt. But some guys have to mature as cricketers."

Styris followed up with three wickets for five runs in two overs to compound the damage.

Tatenda Taibu top-scored with 21, with only fellow opener Masakadza also making it to 20. Greg Lamb was 14 not out, with 11 extras the fourth best score of the innings.

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