Marchant de Lange and Hashim Amla continued South Africa’s red hot dominant streak against New Zealand, beating them by five wickets in the final ODI at Auckland.
New Zealand, who are now on a five match slide, failed to deliver any convincing evidence that they were looking to be back in top form.
New Zealand Captain, Brendon McCullum, knows that the team need to ramp up their game before the first test match begins. “SA was too good for us. We’re going to learn from the experiences we’ve had against you guys” he said.
South Africa opted to bowl first after winning the toss due to the dreary conditions, which ended up delaying the start of play.
Once the skies cleared up, the New Zealand batsmen began to feel the wrath of the South African bowling lineup. With some tight accurate bowling, the batsmen started to give under the pressure and both openers were dismissed cheaply.
New Zealand, who were looking very uncomfortable at the beginning of the innings, started to find their groove and the most of the middle order batsmen got good starts, but under the constant bombardment of accurate South African bowling, they failed to capitalise on the starts they got.
McCullum, who looked to be on top of the bowling was unlucky when he was caught out, falling just three short of what would have been a brilliant half century. He was well supported by other middle order batsmen, James Franklin and debutant Colin de Grandhomme, who both scored 36 runs,.
With the continuous fall of wickets, New Zealand buckled and were bowled out for only 206 runs, with three overs to spare.
Marchant de Lange was the bowler who kept the New Zealand batsmen guessing and under constant pressure, as he snapped up four wickets, but, all the other South African bowlers played a vital role in limiting the runs scored and keep the bowling spot on.
De Lange, who was awarded the Man of the Match award, for his amazing bowling spell, said: “Enjoying NZ conditions. Awesome having the big guys around. Might be a bit more pace in the Tests. Storing it in the tank.”
Facing an easy target to chase down, South Africa’s Hashim Amla, right from the get go, went on the offensive, as he communicated well and dispatched an loose deliveries down to the boundary.
Amla and other opener, Wayne Parnell, had a brilliant 80 run partnership as South Africa closed in on the series whitewash.
However, even with the wicket of Parnell, Amla was yet again part of another half century partnership, this time with Albie Morkel, as the pair put together 58 valuable runs.
Amla was soon dismissed for 76 and Morkel followed in quick succession, scoring 41.
However, the middle order, started to edge South Africa closer to the target with some sensible cricket, and even though New Zealand gained some quick breakthroughs, the South Africans reached their target in style, thanks to a massive six hit by Captain AB de Villiers.
New Zealand’s Rob Nicol was the pick of the bowlers, as he picked up two wickets, but, Kyle Mills, Michael Bates and Andrew Ellis, all had a wicket each in the sides rather unenergetic attempt to try and defend their low total.
Captain McCullum, who was shocked by the series defeat, is now looking to move forward and improve the teams all round performance. “Thanks for the hard fought series. Us as a group will definitely go forward from these performances” he said.
Captain de Villiers, was pleased with the series whitewash and wished New Zealand all the best when the two sides meet in the upcoming test matches. “We all know you (NZ) are a good team, and you will bounce back” he said.
New Zealand, who have been playing fairly well in test matches, will look to bring down the South Africans, as the two sides square off in the first test match at Dunedin on the 7th of March.