Whichever way New Zealand moved in the Twenty20 tri-series, Australia had their measure.

At 16 for three in the fourth over after getting sent in at the Sydney Cricket Ground? Check.

Succumbing to a world record T20 chase after posting 243 for six at Eden Park? Check.

Having their momentum punctured at regular intervals to flail at 93 for six in the final? Checkmate.


New Zealand set a target three times; Australia chased it down three times, albeit with two Duckworth-Lewis method interventions.

With form players coming out of the Big Bash League and David Warner brimming with vigour as skipper, Australia were a distance ahead of New Zealand - and England - in their T20 capability.

Last night provided another example of their dominance.

Man-of-the-match Ashton Agar's precise slow left-arm orthodox spin brought three wickets for 27 runs; Kane Richardson's 12 dot balls were part of 47 in total; and D'Arcy Short seared 50 runs off 30 balls in his debut series.

Ish Sodhi and Mitchell Santner offered pep with the ball for New Zealand, as did Trent Boult. However, Santner's injury-enforced absence left a chasm in the first encounter at Eden Park.

Opening stands of 48 off 27 balls and 132 off 64 balls between Martin Guptill and Colin Munro in the second and third matches gave New Zealand impetus which the middle order could not sustain.

Ross Taylor's 43 not out off 38 balls last night offered brief respite as they crept to 150 for nine.

"We got off to a good start – it was definitely a slower wicket than the other day - but 150 was never enough.

"I thought if we could scrape to 160-165 and get early wickets we might give ourselves a sniff.

"The injury to Chris Lynn [dislocated right shoulder in the field] left them one batter short, but the best team won the series and it's a disappointing result for us."

Taylor said the loss of regular wickets was their downfall.

"Because you still need few balls to get in. It wasn't easy to dominate from ball one.

"It's daunting for a spinner to come out against those boundaries, but Ashton [Agar] changed his pace well, tossed it up and got a couple early.

"We weren't able to rebuild quick enough. We wanted to get partnerships but in Twenty20 you lose wickets with attacking options and - right or wrong - you've got to back the batsmen to make a decision. Then Short took it away from us at the top."

Warner showed faith in his bowlers – albeit chopping and changing them over by over - and skill in his fielding strategy.

"The other day we saw that if you are going at 10s or 12s [an over] you might as well try something.

"It is not about sustained spells, it is more about the bowlers executing their first overs when they come on.

"We always try to coach the guys at training to start well with your first six [deliveries], and we try to make it game-scenarios as much as we can in the nets where they try to execute their best ball.

Warner said you can't rely on swing in T20 cricket.

"You have to adapt and might have to go with a yorker or an off-pace delivery or the odd bumper.

"You saw with Stoin [Marcus Stoinis] in his first over he bowled a yorker first up. That's the bowler thinking, and not me telling them what to do.

"They executed well and I can't fault them throughout this tournament."

Warner said New Zealand should not be too concerned.

"When you look forward to the [T20] World Cup being in Australia [in 2020] with bigger grounds, I think the spinners will definitely play a big role, their frontline quicks are awesome and their top-order batters are great."

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