Cricket: Black Caps start with warmup win

New Zealand settled into their World Cup campaign with a 32-run win over Ireland in their opening warmup game at Nagpur yesterday.

Opener Martin Guptill's 130 off 134 balls spearheaded New Zealand's charge to 311 for six, after being sent in.

New Zealand overcame the loss of Brendon McCullum, in the third over, as Guptill shared successive stands of 79 with Jesse Ryder (48), 47 with Ross Taylor (33), 104 with James Franklin (49) and 37 off three overs with Scott Styris (29 not out off 15 balls).

The New Zealand bowling wasn't as sharp as they might have hoped, as Ireland made a decent fist of the chase.

Openers William Porterfield and Paul Stirling put on 93 in 13 overs and at the 30-over mark, Ireland were 177 for two.

However New Zealand chipped wickets away to ensure no embarrassing pre-tournament hiccup, captain Dan Vettori taking four for 42. Pace bowler Hamish Bennett copped a flogging, taking two for 61 off just seven overs.

"We bowled a little loosely and they capitalised on it," Guptill said.

"But we pulled it back in the middle overs."

He gave Ireland credit for their early bowling and praised Ryder for getting the New Zealand innings moving.

"Jesse's a very attacking player and he took some of the pressure off me."

New Zealand's final warmup game is against joint hosts India in Chennai on Wednesday night.

* Morne Morkel grabbed three wickets and Jacques Kallis hit an unbeaten 49 as South Africa raced to an emphatic eight-wicket win over Zimbabwe in Chennai.

Seamer Morkel took three for 16 and leg-spinner Imran Tahir bagged three for 35 as Zimbabwe were dismissed for 152 after electing to bat.

* Skipper Shakib Al Hasan led from the front as World Cup hosts Bangladesh trounced lowly Canada by nine wickets in Chittagong.

Shakib took three for five with his left-arm spin as Canada were shot out for 112 in 37.3 overs after being sent in.

* Ramnaresh Sarwan scored 123 and Andre Russell took four for 43 to give West Indies a morale-boosting 61-run win over Kenya in Colombo.

West Indies scored 253 for eight. Sarwan's 125-ball innings included 11 fours and five sixes, while Dwayne Bravo made 54.

Kenya started steadily and were 137 for three at one stage but lost seven wickets for 55 to be dismissed for 192.

* Sri Lanka made 351 for five, including four half centuries, against the Netherlands before bowling the opposition out for 195 in Colombo.

- NZ Herald

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