New Zealand continued their consistency in the fourth one-day international of their pre-Champions Trophy tri-series, reaching 270 for eight after being sent in by Bangladesh at Dublin.
Tom Latham (84) and Neil Broom (63) provided the innings' spine with a second-wicket partnership of 133 in the curtain-raiser to the sides' tournament meeting on June 9 at Cardiff.
That stand was tempered by a middle order collapse which drew scrutiny to the batting capability of the Black Caps' all-rounder contingent when they face the likes of Australia and England next month.
New Zealand went from 208 for three in the 39th over to 226 for seven in the 44th. With Corey Anderson's dismissal for 24, they lost four wickets for 18 runs in 27 balls as Jimmy Neesham, Mitchell Santner and Colin Munro added seven runs between them.
Ross Taylor knitted the innings into a competitive total with a senior pro's 60 from 56 balls.
The Bangladesh bowlers fought back in later spells. Off spinner Nasir Hossain removed Latham and Broom to finish with two wickets for 47 runs from nine overs. He was backed by Mashrafe Mortaza 2-52 and Shakib Al Hasan's 2-41.
The Tigers' biggest weakness was catching. Latham was dropped on nought by Nasir at square leg off Mashrafe in the first over. That was followed by an escape on 50 from a dollied caught-and-bowled. Bowler Mosaddek Hossain claimed to have been obstructed by non-striker Broom. The decision was referred to the television official by umpire Roly Black. Broom was declared not guilty.
New Zealand were saved by the tempo and platform built by the likes of Latham's crisp strokes, particularly square of the wicket. As a result, batsmen didn't have to swing like bushmen with machetes at the death. Solid opening powerplays of 57-2 (Ireland), 48-1 (Bangladesh), 70-0 (Ireland) and 60-1 (Bangladesh) across the series were backed by gritty middle 30-over blocks of 145-2, 156-3, 152-3 and 157-3.
The incumbent Black Caps side will likely bear little resemblance to that which takes the field in the Champions Trophy once the Indian Premier League contingent of Trent Boult, Colin de Grandhomme, Martin Guptill, Mitchell McClenaghan, Tim Southee and Kane Williamson are considered.
A conundrum presents at the top of the order on who will open with Guptill. Latham, who captained the side in Williamson's absence, is in better batting form than Luke Ronchi, yet Ronchi has been the designated wicketkeeper across the series.
Latham has contributed 257 runs at an average of 64.25 and strike rate of 88 in the series; Ronchi has made 101 runs at 25.25 and a strike rate of 113.
If New Zealand opt for Latham, they are likely to get regular runs at a steady clip; choose Ronchi and a game could be wrested away from the opposition, at high risk, in a matter of overs.
The advantage of Latham is that he can provide an anchor to work the strike, allowing Guptill to free his arms and clear his hip. Conversely, Ronchi could act as the aggressor, giving Guptill the chance to build an innings.
The latter only becomes an option because of the faith Williamson and Taylor offer as safety nets.
Whoever out of Latham or Ronchi is chosen for the Champions Trophy will keep wicket.
Ronchi has delivered sound performances with the gloves in Ireland, accruing three catches and two stumpings while conceding a solitary four byes off Ish Sodhi to Niall O'Brien in their opening match.
Compared to first-class cricket, wicketkeepers rarely touch the ball in ODIs so it might be worth risking Latham with the gloves to balance the side.