|Brendon McCullum: Something to get excited about
Bold batting carried New Zealand to a 102-run win over Bangladesh in the rain-shortened second limited-overs cricket match and a 2-0 win in the three-match series.
Jamie How, Peter Fulton and Jacob Oram made half centuries as New Zealand reached 335 for five batting first, its 10th-highest one-day score and second-highest against Bangladesh, and the tourists were 181 for six when rain stopped play seven overs early.
New Zealand’s winning margin was determined by the Duckworth-Lewis scoring system.
Bangladesh had to achieve its highest-ever one day score to win the match and to beat by 135 runs its highest total against New Zealand, the 201 posted in the first match on Wednesday when it lost by six wickets.
Openers Tamim Iqbal (43) and Zunaed Siddique (15) gave their team a solid base with a partnership of 64 for the first wicket but their dismissals and the loss of Mohammad Ashraful for three, leaving Bangladesh 68-3, sapped any winning chance.
Aftab Ahmed top-scored with 54 but took his runs from 78 balls at a strike rate of 69 as the Bangladesh challenge gradually dwindled before finally being extinguished by rain.
New Zealand’s commanding batting performance, after they had won the toss and made first use of a perfect batting pitch at McLean Park, decided the match and the series.
How made 74 in partnerships of 82 with Brendon McCullum (35) for the first wicket and 64 with Fulton for the second, which set up New Zealand’s imposing total, allowing them to hit out later with wickets in hand.
Fulton was man of the match for his 83 which included a stand of 62 with Scott Styris (41) for the third wicket.
He enlarged on the foundation set by How, who top-scored with 89 in the first international, won by New Zealand by six wickets on Wednesday.
McCullum and How made a steady, composed start, working singles and twos and raising New Zealand’s 50 in the 11th over.
McCullum was run out when New Zealand was 82 and Bangladesh briefly restricted New Zealand’s scoring as Fulton, searching for his timing after an injury layoff, scratched for early runs.
The tall right-hander was eventually able to settle down and, as he found the pace of the pitch, to score more freely.
He posted his half century from 56 balls with five fours and gave New Zealand’s innings new momentum.
How fell lbw to Abdur Razzak, giving some solace to the spinner who took two wickets but conceded 75 runs from his 10 overs.
The opener faced 77 balls and hit 12 boundaries.
Fulton went on to reach the innings’ top score, lacing his innings with five fours and a six from 93 balls.
Styris’ supportive innings kept up the run rate and allowed New Zealand to fully attack the Bangladesh bowlers in the last 10 overs.
Jacob Oram and Ross Taylor built on the strong foundation, carrying New Zealand past 300 in the 48th over.
Oram used all of his power to punish the poor length and line of the Bangladesh bowlers in the closing overs.
He dashed to his half century from only 29 balls with four fours and four sixes and put on 89 with Taylor from only 49 deliveries.
Oram was out to the last ball of the innings and Taylor was left 34 not out, having taken his runs from only 24 balls.