Australia’s miserable run on the field continued as they lost the opening match of the Chappell-Hadlee by 159 runs at Eden Park, Auckland.
Earlier, New Zealand batted first after Steven Smith opted to field first after having won the toss. It went on to be a costly decision as openers Martin Guptill and Brendon McCullum tore into the Aussie bowling order. Though two quick wickets fell for New Zealand, with McCullum departing for 44 and Kane Williamson out for a duck, Guptill continued his momentum-fuelled play. Henry Nichols and Guptill put on a 101-run stand for the third wicket, before Guptill was out for 90. And though the partnerships thereafter didn’t continue to be steady for New Zealand, their efforts saw them post 307 runs in 50 overs for the loss of eight wickets.
Josh Hazlewood, Mitchell Marsh and James Faulkner picked two wickets each, while John Hastings claimed a wicket. Guptill was however run-out by Faulkner.
Trent Boult, Matt Henry and Mitchell Santner ripped apart the Australian batting order as the visitors were left scrambling. Boult and Henry picked three wickets each and Santner had two wickets to his name as the Australian batting collapsed for 148 runs in 24.2 overs. Matthew Wade and James Faulkner played some restorative game lower down the order, but their efforts went in vain. Wade hit 37 runs off 58 balls, while Faulkner hit 36 runs off 60 balls.
To compound their defeat, following the match it also became clear that James Faulkner wouldn’t be able to play further in the series after having injured his hamstring during the course of the match.
The next two matches thus become an uphill task for the Aussies, who will now be seeking to tilt the event’s course to their advantage. The second ODI will be played in Wellington on Saturday, 6th February and the final ODI will be played in Hamilton on Monday, 8th February.