Image courtesy of: Zimbio
New Zealand batsman Corey Anderson clubbed a sensational 94 not out to not only lead his side to a 27-run win over Bangladesh in the third Twenty20 International in Mount Maunganui, but also help them complete a 3-0 whitewash.
While Anderson stole the spotlight with his barrage of big hits, he was well supported by captain Kane Williamson, who scored 60 and took the wicket of Sabbir Rahman.
Being put in to bat first, New Zealand got off to a quick start before opener Tom Latham was trapped lbw off the bowling of Rubel Hossain for 15.
Colin Munro and Tom Bruce fell shortly after for a duck and five runs respectively before Williamson and Anderson stabilised the innings with a 124-run partnership, which is the second-highest fourth-wicket partnership in Twenty20 Internationals.
With New Zealand firmly in the driver’s seat, Bangladesh struck back as Rubel clean bowled Williamson for 60, which came off 57 balls and included six boundaries and a six.
Image courtesy of: Zimbio
Anderson, meanwhile, went on to make an unbeaten 94, which came off 41 deliveries and included two boundaries and 10 sixes, to lead New Zealand to 194/4 off their 20 overs.
Anderson’s superb knock was the fifth-highest score by a New Zealand batsman in Twenty20 Internationals.
Rubel was the pick of the bowlers with three wickets, while Mosaddek Hossain chipped in with one.
Chasing 195 to win, Bangladesh made a solid start to their innings before opener Tamim Iqbal was dismissed by Trent Boult for 24.
Just as Bangladesh were beginning to rebuild from the loss of Iqbal, they were dealt another blow as Soumya Sarkar was caught and bowled by Ish Sodhi for 42.
Following Sarkar’s departure, Bangladesh continued to lose wickets at regular intervals as Sabbir, Mahmudullah and Mosaddek were on their way back to the pavilion after having made 18, 18 and 12 respectively.
Shakib Al Hasan tried valiantly right until the end keep the tourists in the game, but it was no use as he was eventually sent packing by Boult for 41.
In the end, Bangladesh fell short of their target as they finished on 167/6 off their 20 overs.
Boult and Sodhi took two wickets apiece, while Williamson and Mitchell Santner claimed one wicket each.
Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Mortaza was disappointed with his side’s performance, and said: “I have to scan first and then see what happens. Obviously, it was difficult. The way they batted was really good. We still put some pressure on them, but they put it away. The Tests are going to be tough; we need to be strong mentally.”
Williamson was thrilled to have completed a 3-0 whitewash, and said: “Feels good, nice to get the series win. It was good of the boys to show improvement. Compared to the previous game, today we had to work really hard. Corey’s knock was outstanding. It wasn’t always easy, he had to adjust to the wind. It was nice to be at the other end watching him do it. It was nice to play the anchor’s role.
“Frustrating sometimes, but it’s about doing what the team needs. We have had a few injuries and the teams have changed coming into different surfaces. I suppose making a match-winning contribution in both games is not easy but he did well. We are looking forward to the Test series and we expect Bangladesh to come hard at us.”
Anderson was named Man of the Match, and said: “I think we probably needed a few more runs to make the total a defendable one, and the position we had got into was certainly a good one.”