South Africa require 290 runs to win the second ODI against New Zealand after Ross Taylor hit 102 in Christchurch.
The Proteas boast a world-class top six and bat all the way down to No 9. They will back themselves to chase down New Zealand’s total and to take a 2-0 lead in this five-game series. They will fancy their chances of claiming a 13th straight ODI victory and breaking the South African record.
Yet, they will be disappointed with their bowling effort on what was another slow New Zealand wicket. Apart from Dwaine Pretorius, who finished with figures of 2-40, the Proteas bowlers leaked runs at crucial times.
Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor put on 104 runs for the third wicket. At 157-2 after 30 overs, the platform was set for the remaining batsmen to launch.
Williamson then played a loose stroke to lose his wicket and Neil Broom also endeavoured to get himself out. New Zealand recovered, though, with Taylor and Jimmy Neesham going at a run-a-ball for the next 10 overs.
At the start of the 44th over, Taylor and Neesham started to accelerate. The former reached his century with a fine shot off the very last ball of the innings. The latter was the chief destroyer, smashing 71 off 57.
New Zealand added 71 runs during that seven-over period. Taylor and Neesham finished with a partnership of 123 for the fifth wicket, which is a record against South Africa. Taylor scored his 17th ODI century to surpass Nathan Astle for the most tons in New Zealand cricket.
The Proteas boast plenty of depth in their batting lineup. However, if they go on to lose this match, they may come to regret their loose bowling and fielding display at the death of New Zealand’s innings.
NZ 289-4 (50 overs) – Ross Taylor 102 not out, Jimmy Neesham 71 not out, Kane Williamson 69, Dwaine Pretorius 2-40
South Africa need 290 runs to win
Photo: Marty Mellville/AFP/Getty Images