ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 1st Match: All-round Anderson gives New Zealand perfect start

Anderson was named Man of the Match for excelling with both the bat and ball

Anderson was named Man of the Match for excelling with both the bat and ball

Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo

New Zealand all-rounder Corey Anderson smashed 75 runs and took two wickets to not only help his side crush Sri Lanka by 98 runs, but also get their World Cup campaign off to a perfect start.

Anderson was well supported by captain Brendon McCullum and batsman Kane Williamson, who made 65 and 57 respectively.

However, Sri Lanka opener Lahiru Thirimanne deserves some credit as he scored a valiant 65.

Sri Lanka captain Angelo Mathews would have been brooding over his decision to bowl first after McCullum and Martin Guptill amassed a 111-run partnership, during which McCullum brought up his half-century.

The partnership finally came to an end when McCullum was caught by Jeevan Mendis at long-off off the bowling of Rangana Herath.

McCullum’s brilliant knock of 65 came off 49 balls and included 10 boundaries and a six.

McCullum helped New Zealand get off to a strong start

McCullum helped New Zealand get off to a strong start

Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo

Guptill, who was playing in his 100th ODI, went on to score 49 runs before he was caught behind off the bowling of Suranga Lakmal.

Williamson and Ross Taylor stabilised the innings with a 57-run partnership, during which Williamson registered his half-century, before he was brilliantly caught by Dimuth Karunaratne at cow corner off the bowling of Mendis.

Williamson’s solid knock of 57 came off 65 balls and included five boundaries and a six.

Williamson hit five boundaries and a six during his knock of 57

Williamson hit five boundaries and a six during his knock of 57

Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo

Mendis struck again the very next ball when Taylor was stumped by Kumar Sangakkara for 14.

Grant Elliott and Anderson steadied the innings with a 65-run partnership before Elliott was caught by Thirimanne at deep midwicket off the bowling of Lakmal for 29.

Anderson and Luke Ronchi kept the runs flowing with a 73-run partnership, during which Anderson recorded his half-century, before he was caught by Lakmal at cover off the bowling of Nuwan Kulasekara.

Anderson’s excellent knock of 75 came off 46 deliveries and included eight boundaries and two sixes.

Thanks to Ronchi’s quickfire knock of 29, New Zealand finished on 331/6 off their 50 overs.

Lakmal and Mendis picked up two wickets apiece, while Herath and Kulasekara chipped in with one wicket each.

Chasing 332 to win, Sri Lanka got off to a brilliant start as Tillakaratne Dilshan and Thirimanne amassed a 67-run partnership before Dilshan was caught and bowled by Daniel Vettori for 24.

The runs kept on coming for Sri Lanka as Thirimanne and Sangakkara put together a 57-run partnership, during which Thirimanne brought up his half-century, before he was clean bowled by Trent Boult.

Thirimanne’s lovely knock of 65 came off 60 balls and included eight boundaries.

Thirimanne was Sri Lanka's top-scorer with 65 runs

Thirimanne was Sri Lanka’s top-scorer with 65 runs

Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo

Mahela Jayawardene failed to trouble the scorers as he was caught behind off the bowling of Vettori for a duck.

Sangakkara went on to score 39 runs before he was given out lbw off the bowling of Boult.

Sangakkara decided to review the decision right away, but replays showed that the ball was pitching in line and going on to hit the stumps.

Karunaratne made 14 runs before he was cleaned up by Adam Milne.

Milne struck again just three balls later when Mendis caught behind for four runs.

Kulasekara mustered 10 runs before he was caught by Elliott at deep extra cover off the bowling of Anderson.

Mathews managed to make 46 runs before he was caught by Vettori at mid-on off the bowling of Tim Southee.

Southee took his second wicket just three balls later when Lasith Malinga was caught behind for a golden duck.

Sri Lanka were bowled out for 233 when Herath was caught by Milne at cover off the bowling of Anderson for 13.

Southee, Boult, Milne, Vettori and Anderson claimed two wickets each.

Mathews was disappointed to have lost, and said: “We knew it was going to be a good wicket so we knew we had to bowl well, but they started off poorly, and by that time it was too late. Especially after the start they got when they reached 100 in the 13th over. We did reasonably well to pull them back, but we gave up 30-40 runs too many. Once we lost the big guys at the top it became tougher on the rest of the guys. You need someone in the top four to get a biggie when you are chasing down a 300+ score. Malinga will get better and better and we all know what kind of bowler he is, so he will come back strong.”

McCullum was ecstatic to have gotten his side’s World Cup campaign off to a perfect start, and said: “Really good performance from the boys. We have been waiting a long time for this so it is great to complete our plans. I thought it might swing so I also thought about bowling first. The wicket was a bit on the slow side, but there was definitely good bounce and carry. It was great to lay the foundation and then allow the bigger hitters to come in and do the job. We look forward to the next game now, but it is great to beat a very tough Sri Lanka team. It is really pleasing to use cross-seamers and pitch the ball on the fourth/fifth stump lines were really good. I thought Boult and Milne came back really well and looked to be searching for wickets, so we were pretty pleased with how those guys played. Daniel Vettori was brilliant as always. Milne is a great weapon to have in the team, and I suspect he might just go the way of that tweet (when asked if Milne is the next Shane Bond).”

Anderson was named Man of the Match, and said: “It’s nice to come back home and play in front of family and friends. I guess this World Cup is the stuff we dream of. There were more nerves than normal, but that is pretty cliché isn’t it? You always want to do well for NZ. I always have a different plan when I go out to bat, and it turns out differently in the middle. We just wanted to turn that par total into a winning total. Brendon held me back for a little bit till the end, so it was good to get a bowl, but the other bowlers really set the tone, especially Dan who just took them out of the game.”

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