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New Zealand take opening match against Scotland

Cricket Scotland @CricketScotland
July 27, 2022 3 weeks
New Zealand take opening match against Scotland
LASER BOOK Bilateral Series - Scotland v New Zealand 27/07/2022. Scotland play host to the New Zealand Blackcaps in the Laser Books Bilateral Series at the Grange, Edinburgh, UK. Pic shows: A comfortable win for the blackcaps beating Scotland by 68 runs. Credit: Ian Jacobs

New Zealand won the Laser Book Bilateral Series opener on Wednesday when they took the first T20 international by 68-runs against Scotland at The Grange in Edinburgh.

Playing in their first T20 international since the World Cup back in November 2021, Scotland made three changes with Oli Hairs, Calum MacLeod and Chris Sole coming into the XI – nine months later – for the recently retired Kyle Coetzer, Dylan Budge and Brad Wheal.

The Scots won the toss and skipper Richie Berrington decided to put New Zealand in to bat.

The home side thought they had taken a wicket early on, but Chris Sole was adjudged to have bowled a no ball.

As it was, Martin Guptill and Finn Allen put on 85 for the first wicket before the former was caught behind by wicketkeeper Matthew Cross off the bowling of Berrington for 40.

Glenn Phillips then made 23 off 16 balls before he fell to Hamza Tahir when Michael Leask took a smart catch.

Allen continued on his merry way though and brought up a brilliant century before he was stumped by Cross off the bowling of Mark Watt. His 101 had come off just 56 balls and he hit 14 of his side’s 29 boundaries.

Daryl Mitchell made 23 not out and Jimmy Neesham 30 off just nine balls as the Black Caps posted 225-5 from their 20 overs, a daunting total indeed.

Berrington took 1-13, Tahir took 1-28, fellow spinner Watt 1-32 and Sole took a wicket, but did go for 72 runs. while there was a run out.

In reply, Scotland openers George Munsey and Calum MacLeod put on 62 for the first wicket before the former was caught by Allen, unsurprisingly named player of the match later on, in the ninth over off the bowling of Ish Sodhi.

Ollie Hairs, MacLeod, Berrington and Cross fell to leave things at 88-5 in the 13th over and although Chris Greaves made 31 off 22 balls, Michael Leask made 12, Watt contributed 17 not out off 12 balls and Safyaan Sharif chipped in with 14, the Scots finished up on 157-8.

Sodhi was the star bowler with 4-28.

After the match, Scotland head coach Shane Burger said:  “All credit to New Zealand, their skills were far superior to ours in this game. 

“There were times in the game where we played really good cricket, I thought our fielding was really good. From a bowling point of view to give them 14 sixes and to bowl five no balls was just down to some ill-discipline on our part.

“That really gave them momentum and when you get a wicket in the second over only to see it called a a no ball it just means that little things are not going for you in the game.

“With our batting I thought we started well when the ball was doing a bit, but it was a lot to chase and, ultimately, it was too much.

“We always want to get better and challenge ourselves against the best teams. We don’t always get the chance to play these teams, so we have to take every opportunity to get better.

“The more opportunity the guys get to play like this under pressure and do it more consistently, the better.

“We are looking forward to Friday now.”

Burger mentions Friday and that is when Scotland and New Zealand play the second T20 international at the same ground at 2.30pm.

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