New Zealand had the last laugh in the ODI series as well against the hapless Sri Lanka. The Black Caps have outclassed the Lankan Lions yet again in he fifth and final ODI by 36 runs, thereby winning the series 3-1.
Sri Lanka had won the toss and elected to field at the Bay Oval in Mount Maunganui on Tuesday. Sri Lanka skipper Angelo Mathews misread the pitch early on and decided to ask the Kiwis to bat first.
The visitors did strike an early blow by dismissing Tom Latham cheaply, but they could not stop the run flow when Martin Guptill and Kane Williamson batted with so much ease.
Guptill went on to score his ninth ODI century, but threw his wickets away immediately after scoring the ton. Williamson also did not last long after his half century. Ross Taylor, Luke Ronchi and a late flourish from Mitchell Santner helped New Zealand to reach a total of 294 for the loss of five wickets at the end of their alotted 50 overs.
It was meant to be a difficult run chase on a tricky wicket at the Bay Oval. The Kiwi bowlers struck three early blows to Sri Lanka struggle at 33 runs for the loss of three wickets.
Mathews and Dinesh Chandimal added 93 runs together to pull their side out of the trouble they were forced into early on in the chase. Chandimal scored a good half century but got out immediately after scoring it. Mathews held on to his wicket and went on to score 95 runs until Matt Henry got the better of him.
Henry was on fire today as he bagged a five-for by giving away just 40 runs in his spell of 10 overs. Trent Boult also picked up three wickets. New Zealand bowlers were right on the money and they kept on picking up wickets at regular intervals.
New Zealand and Sri Lanka will play a two-match T20 series starting from 7 January at the same venue.