New Zealand batter Tom Latham joined iconic Brendon McCullum for the highest number of fifties as a wicketkeeper for the Kiwis in the World Cup. Latham’s measured knock played a crucial role in taking New Zealand’s score to 288-6 during their clash against Afghanistan at the MA Chidambaram Stadium. Latham struck 68 off 74 balls to push the Kiwis to a competitive total. This was the third time in his career he struck a score of more than 50 in the World Cup for New Zealand.
Before Latham’s game-changing knock, McCullum held the record for most 50-plus scores (3) for the Blackcaps in the World Cup as a wicketkeeper. Lee Germon with a single 50-plus score is also a part of this club.
New Zealand defeated Afghanistan by 149 runs to continue their winning run in the World Cup. After putting up a challenging total, the Kiwis made no mistake in defending the 288-run target.
All-rounder Mitchell Santner reacts to reaching rare milestone in ODI
New Zealand all-rounder Mitchell Santner expressed his delight after becoming only the second Kiwi spinner to reach 100 ODI scalps following their victory over Afghanistan
Santner clinched three wickets which saw him become just the second Black Caps spinner to reach 100 ODI dismissals, following in the footsteps of iconic spinner Daniel Vettori.
“It’s obviously nice to get to that milestone. I guess I wasn’t thinking about it too much leading into the game it’s just about trying to perform my role and do a job out there just like every other game. I think I’m 200 odd wickets behind him, so it’s going to be a tough challenge to get there,” Santner said in the post-match conference.
Santner’s (11) excellent start on the Indian pitches not only sees him top the overall wicket-taking charts, he now has almost double the tally of the next-highest spinner in that list – Afghanistan’s Rashid Khan (6).
But the 31-year-old says the secret to his success has more been derived from the pressure that is built by his team’s opening bowlers – Trent Boult and Matt Henry.
“It’s obviously nice to come here and see the ball spin a little bit, you don’t really get those (wickets) in New Zealand. I think as a whole, we’ve been bowling in partnerships, that’s what we talk about. The guys up front today Boult and Matt Henry did an exceptional job in getting that run rate up, and then it kind of makes them want to play bigger shots in the middle (overs),” Santner said.
“I think as a partnership, as a unit, we’ve been bowling pretty well and I was lucky to chip in today for a few. But I think the way the seam has kind of set that up was massive for us,” Santner added.
Santner was on a ground that is quite familiar to him as he features in the Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise Chennai Super Kings.
“I guess when we turn up here for IPL, we’ve played on wickets that kind of look similar to that. Today, it looked like it swung a little bit and actually spun a little bit more under lights, which kind of helped that we lost the toss and batted first,” Santner noted.
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