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The Sun Just Set On New Zealand's Mammoth Run Chase

At least they made it interesting.

06/12/2016 4:56 PM AEDT | Updated 07/12/2016 10:00 AM AEDT
Cricket Australia/Getty Images
Who said Canberra wasn't a colourful city?

New Zealand made a decent fist of overhauling Australia's mammoth total in the second One Day International against Australia at Canberra's Manuka Oval.

Chasing Australia's third highest One Day International total of 5/378, the Kiwis still looked a chance when they reached 200 after just 35 overs. Sure, they required 12 runs an over from there on in, but with the world's 5th-ranked ODI batsman Kane Williamson at the crease, who knew what might happen?

When Williamson fell for 81 in the 40th over, it was effectively over. The Kiwis had several good contributors in their chase, including James Neesham, who compiled an impressive 76, and Martin Guptill, who made 48 runs in the manner of a man who just realised he'd left the stove on at home. But someone had to go big, and fast. And that person never materialised.

New Zealand were eventually dismissed for 262, a 116 run loss. Mitch Starc and Josh Hazlewood took two wickets each, but the pick of the bowlers was Pat Cummins. He was a little expensive in his international recall on Sunday at the SCG but Canberra he always looked menacing and finished with 4/41.

The Chappell Hadlee series has now passed from Kiwi hands back into Australian hands, where we can safely say it belongs. And the summer of cricket which looked so ugly two weeks ago has suddenly taken on a rosy tinge.

Or was that just the sunset?

Cricket Australia/Getty Images
Pat Cummins was in red hot form.

EARLIER...

OK, so at last, we get the Mitchell Marsh thing. The young brother of Shaun, and son of former Test and One Day opener Geoff, has been an enigma in the minds of most Australians, and was recently dropped from the Test team after pretty much doing nothing in 18 painful Tests.

But he's finally shown us all why selectors love him. In just 40 balls, Marsh bludgeoned an unbeaten 76 off 40 balls, including seven sixes.

Australia made 5/378, the second highest total in 16 matches at the Canberra venue.

Earlier, Kiwi skipper Kane Williamson sent Australia into bat in one of those real 'WTF?' sporting moments. Manuka Oval has been a batsman's paradise in recent years. Seven of the last 10 matches at the ground have yielded at least one innings in excess of 320.

Dave Warner duly wasted no time notching his tenth ODI century. Aussie captain Steve Smith brought up fifty without any fuss at all soon afterwards.

Smith was then was given out caught behind, but had the decision reversed on review when replays showed he had not touched the ball. But a subsequent delivery did indeed touch the balls. Ahem. You'll see what we mean...

Cue half the nation wincing in unison. Channel Nine showed they had a sense of humour when they played The Cure's Classic anthem "Boy's Don't Cry a few moments after the blow.

Fortunately, Smith appeared to recover quickly. Soon afterwards, Dave Warner got out for 119 thanks to a brilliant catch by Kane Williamson. Smith departed a few overs later for a well made 72.

Travis Head, in just his 13th ODI, showed that he's set to become a fixture in the middle order with his brutal 57 off 32 balls -- his second consecutive half century. But it was Marsh who really took the score from big to pretty much unchaseable.

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Cool old Cure songs are here.

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