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Posted: Monday 17 June, 2024 at 7:58 PM

New Zealand hammer Papua New Guinea as Lockie Ferguson makes history

New Zealand celebrates against Papua New Guinea (ICC Photo)
By: ICC,

    TAROUBA, Trinidad -- New Zealand ended their tournament with a comfortable win over Papua New Guinea in the penultimate match of the group stage at the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2024.


    Lockie Ferguson made history as he bowled four maidens to return the format's most economical figures, taking 3/0 against Papua New Guinea, playing a big hand in his team's seven-wicket win.


    Ferguson's brilliant achievement is just the second time in men's T20 Internationals that a bowler has got through a full four overs without conceding a run, following on from Canada’s Saad Bin Zafar and his 2/0 against Panama in 2021.


    Ferguson's three wickets helped New Zealand tie Papua New Guinea in knots throughout the first innings in Trinidad, as PNG were bowled out for 78 in 19.4 overs.


    The Black Caps lost Finn Allen (0) and Rachin Ravindra (6) cheaply at the start of their chase, with Kabua Morea (2/4) taking both wickets. But Devon Conway put his team well on course with 35 from 32 balls, before Kane Williamson (18*) and Daryl Mitchell (19*) finished the job with 46 balls to spare.


    After rain had delayed the start of play it was New Zealand who won the toss and opted to bowl first, with Trent Boult making his last appearance at a T20 World Cup. But it was Boult's opening partner Tim Southee who made the first breakthrough, dismissing opener Tony Ura for 1(2) in the second over.


    And Ferguson made an instant impact as he removed PNG captain Assad Vala for 6 (16) with his first delivery as New Zealand dominated the powerplay, restricting their opponents to just 16/2 in the opening six overs.


    Ferguson returned to end a decent partnership between Charles Amini (17 from 25) and Sese Bau (12 from 27), and he ended with his third wicket-maiden in his record-breaking performance.


    Trent Boult, playing possibly for the last time for New Zealand, ended with 2/15, while his opening partner Tim Southee took 2/11.


    And there were wickets for the spinners too, with Ish Sodhi more expensive with his 2/29 from 3.4 overs and Mitchell Santner taking 1/17 from four.


    Only three PNG batters reached double figures, with Norman Vanua hitting 14 from 13 late on to help stretch out the innings.


    Kabua Morea was outstanding with the ball as Papua New Guinea attempted to pull off a miracle and deny New Zealand in their chase of 79 to win.


    The left-armer took 2/4 in his 2.2 overs, accounting for both Allen and Ravindra, who ended their campaigns with low returns.


    Semo Kamea was the other PNG wicket-taker, having Conway trapped lbw for 35, but New Zealand's depth of batting quality was always likely to prove sufficient to knock off the runs cheaply, and so it proved.


    Both of these sides were playing their final match at the tournament after missing out on qualification from Group C.


    For Papua New Guinea that is not perhaps a shock, but for New Zealand, losses to Afghanistan and West Indies ended their campaign before it had barely begun – a hugely disappointing outcome for a side who were ranked fifth in the world at the start of the tournament.


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