A Brendon McCullum show was what would have been hoped for by Kiwi fans and he delivered. Scoring his second T20 century, Brendon helped New Zealand register a thumping 59-run victory over a dangerous Bangladesh. (All AFP Photos)
Martin Guptill looked in ominous form for a while but as soon as the spinners were introduced, he withered away. Abdur Razzak notched him up with a straighter-one for 11. This was to be the only bright spot in the match for the tigers.
Brendon McCullum was shifted to the number three spot as the Black Caps wanted to counter the Bangladesh spinners with a left-hander, James Franklin. Guptill's dismissal meant an early walk-in for McCullum and eventually he would literally not leave until the last ball was bowled.
James Franklin and Brendon McCullum got together at 1-19 and with some sort of bother for the Kiwis. Both weathered that beautifully and forged ahead - Franklin with caution and McCullum with what he does best, attack.
The New Zealand fans, not many here, had a lot to cheer about as McCullum completed his century off 51 balls and went on to add 23 more. His innings had 11 boundaries and seven sixes. He is now the highest individual T20 scorer. McCullum was already the highest run-getter in the format. He now leads a list of seven batsmen with international T20 tons, surpassing his best of 116 en route.
Bangladesh batting would have banked on Tamim Iqbal for a good start but that was never to happen. In fact, Kyle Mills got him in the very first over and Bangladesh could not find a footing after that. Shakib Al Hasan and Mushfiqur Rahim followed soon. The tigers were 4-37 in no time.
When Tim Southee got rid of Mohammad Ashraful, who was looking decent on the crease, any fade hope too went away for the tigers.
Nasir Hossain came in at six for Bangladesh and gave them the right impetus, albeit extremely late. He made 50 off 39 balls to lend some respectability to an otherwise sorry looking card.
There may not have been too many fans but that did not deter the Kiwis to romp home in their opening encounter at the World Twenty20. Now, both the sides face a strong Pakistan side. Bangladesh still have an outside chance to impress while Black Caps will be looking to continue their good run.
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