Trent Boult took four wickets and held the catch to remove top scorer Steve Smith as New Zealand restricted Australia to 195 in the second one-day cricket international and enhanced its prospects of leveling the series.
Skipper Kane Williamson won the toss and sent the home team in to bat Thursday, two days after his New Zealanders lost Game 1 by two wickets despite having Australia reeling at 44-5 chasing a victory target of 233.
New Zealand’s bowling attack again skittled the specialist batters, but again Australia salvaged the innings after slumping to 54-5 in the 19th over.
Smith’s 61 from 94 deliveries, his third-slowest half-century in ODI cricket, and contributions from Glenn Maxwell (25) in the middle and an unbeaten 47-run last-wicket stand between Mitch Starc (38) and Josh Hazlewood (23) lifted the target close to 200.
Matt Henry (3-33) started Australia’s woes in the second over, dismissing skipper Aaron Finch without a run on the board.
It continued a barren stretch for Finch, who fell for his third duck in seven ODI innings that have netted him just 26 runs. Finch tried to attack Henry’s second delivery and only managed to pick out Williamson at mid-off.
Henry and Williamson combined to remove David Warner (5) in similar fashion before Boult trapped both Marnus Labuschagne (5) and Marcus Stoinis (0), with fuller deliveries that nipped off the seam, to have the Australians in trouble again at 26-4 in the ninth over.
Both batters wasted reviews to the TV umpire to challenge on-field decisions that were clearly out, leaving Australia without any referrals for the remainder of the innings.
Smith and Maxwell put on 49 for the sixth wicket to lift the total into triple figures before he hit out at Boult and was caught in the outfield by a diving Martin Guptill. Adam Zampa did his bit to help get the Australians through their allotted overs in a 31-run ninth-wicket stand with Starc before he miscued the last delivery of Boult’s allotted overs and was caught by Jimmy Neesham.
Boult returned 4-38 from his 10 overs.
Starc, who had a reprieve when New Zealand didn’t review a not-out decision for lbw that would have resulted in his dismissal. He attacked the late bowling as Australia added 44 in the last five overs.
Both teams made one change to their starting lineups from the series-opener. Allrounder Cameron Green, who played an integral role in that Australian win with an unbeaten 89 and a 158-run sixth-wicket stand with Alex Carey, was too sore to play in Game 2 and was replaced by pace bowler Sean Abbott.
Tim Southee replaced paceman Lockie Ferguson in the bowling attack, and picked up the key wicket of Smith — caught by Boult — as the former Australia skipper tried to lift the run-rate in the 37th over.