If Kenya held hope of upsetting the BLACKCAPS in the opening group A match at the ICC Cricket World Cup, that hope would have lasted about 45 minutes before young quick Hamish Bennett created carnage and led the favourites to a crushing 10-wicket win at Chennai, India, today.
Kenya won the toss and batted at the MA Chidambaram Stadium but that was where their joy ended after a Bennett-inspired New Zealand pace attack skittled the Africans for 69 in just 23.5 overs.
Bennett ripped through the Kenyan top order with four for 16 from five overs -- his best return from nine one-day internationals -- while Tim Southee and Jacob Oram cleaned up the lower order with three wickets each.
BLACKCAP openers Martin Guptill and Brendon McCullum had no problems in the run chase, using just 48 balls to achieve the target.
Guptill hit two sixes and five fours in a 32-ball unbeaten 39, while Brendon McCullum scored 26 not out from 17 balls.
Kenya made a slow but steady start and were 40 for one in the 12th over, but the introduction of Bennett, who bowled as first change after offspinner Nathan McCullum opened the bowling alongside Southee, triggered the loss of nine wickets for 29 in 12 overs.
Bennett was virtually unplayable as far as the Kenyan batsman were concerned, the 23-year-old from Timaru claiming three leg before wicket decisions and a bowled, all from full length deliveries.
Southee was denied the chance at a hattrick after taking two wickets with the last two balls of his sixth and final over but ended with three for 13, while Oram snared his 150th one-day international wicket en route to figures of three for 2 from 2.5 overs.
Rakep Patel was Kenya's best batsman, ending unbeaten on 16, while opener Seren Waters scored a painstaking 16.
Earlier, New Zealand pace bowler Kyle Mills was sidelined with a back injury, though New Zealand captain Daniel Vettori recovered from a hamstring strain to lead the side and Nathan McCullum took his place in the 11 after spending two days in hospital with an illness.
New Zealand's next match is against Australia at Nagpur on Friday.
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