Australia clinches the T20I tri-series title and claimes the top spot of T20I ranking
By Sandy - Feb 21, 2018 1:25 pm
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On Wednesday, Australia clinched the T20I tri-series after beating the co-hosts New Zealand by 19 runs (D/L method) in the final match at the Eden Park (Auckland). With this victory, Australia climbs up the ICC T20I ranking by finishing with 126 rating points and jointly holding the top-spot of T20I ranking with Pakistan (126 rating points).

Australian cricket team

New Zealand decided to bat first after winning the toss. Despite making a good start, the Kiwis failed to capitalize the innings. After providing a good 48-runs partnership for the opening wicket, opener Martin Guptill departed on 21 runs.

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In the very next over, another opener Colin Munro was dismissed for 29 runs and after that, the team suffered a huge batting collapse. In the almost ten overs collapse incident, the hosts found themselves from 48/0 to 110/8.

Only, Ross Taylor provided some fights till the end of the innings and that’s how New Zealand managed to put 150 runs (150/9) on the board at the end of 20 overs. Taylor played a brilliant and important knock of an unbeaten 43 runs off 38 balls.

Ross Taylor

From the Australian bowling side, Ashton Agar was on the top of this list with the bowling figure of 4-0-27-3. Also, pacers Kane Richardson (2/30) and Andrew Tye (2/30) picked up two wickets each while Billy Stanlake (1/37) and Marcus Stoinis (1/23) claimed a piece of wicket each.

In reply, Australia began their innings strongly. In-form T20I opener D’Arcy Short scored another brilliant half-century (50 runs) in this important clash. Short put a brilliant 72-runs opening partnership with the skipper David Warner before he was sent back to the pavilion just after completing the half-century.

D’Arcy Short
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Since Short’s dismissal, Australian team found a slight batting collapse as Warner (25) and Ashton Agar (2) were dismissed in the quick successions. However, Glenn Maxwell and Aaron Finch restrained the situation and put an important 37-runs partnership for the fourth wicket before the rain stopped the play.

During the rain interruption, Australia was on 121/3 in 14.4 overs while Maxwell and Finch were batting on 20 & 18 respectively. There was no further play as Australia won the match by 19 runs as per D/L method. As per D/L method, Australia needed to score only 103 runs to win in that similar situation.

Among the Kiwi bowlers, Ish Sodhi (1/27), Mitchell Santner (1/29) and Colin Munro (1/18) took one wicket each while the other bowlers failed to pick up at least a wicket.

Ashton Agar was selected as a Player of the Match for his outstanding bowling while Glenn Maxwell received the Player of the Tournament award for his superb batting performances including a brilliant century against England at Hobart.

With this series victory, Australia climbed the joint top-spot in the ICC T20I ranking along with Pakistan, who have the same 126 rating points

After winning the series, Australian stand-in skipper David Warner credited the Big Bash League. Warner said, “I’m over the moon, right from the get-go we played superb cricket. It just shows the great depth we have in Australian cricket. The clarity and roles that these individuals have at Big Bash level can (also) be executed on the international stage.”

Brief Score: New Zealand – 150/9 in 20 overs (Ross Taylor 43*, Colin Munro 29, Ashton Agar 3/27)

Australia (final revised target: 103/3 in 14.4 overs) – 121/3 in 14.4 overs (D’Arcy Short 50, David Warner 25, Colin Munro 1/18)

Result – Australia won by 19 runs (D/L method)

Player of the Match – Ashton Agar (3/27 & 2 runs)

Player of the Series – Glenn Maxwell (233 runs & 3 wickets)