The BLACKCAPS have been knocked out of the ICC World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka following a shattering super-over loss to the West Indies.
After the scores were tied on 139, the BLACKCAPS made 17 in the super-over, only to see the West Indies seal victory off the fifth ball.
Some clean strikes by Ross Taylor looked to have given the BLAKCAPS a very competitive total, but when Chris Gayle struck a six off a no-ball at the start of the over, the West Indies immediately held the advantage.
With five needed off the final two deliveries Marlon Samuels struck a low full-toss off Tim Southee for six, ending the BLACKCAPS aspirations of progressing.
The Kiwi side will feel that the game should never have got to the stage it did, having been in the box seat for much of the match.
Chasing 140 for victory the BLACKCAPS were unable to form a meaningful partnership and relied heavily on the heroics of Taylor. The New Zealand skipper put in a special performance for his side, knocking an unbeaten 62 from 40 deliveries.
The BLACKCAPS pursuit had got off to a shaky start when Rob Nicol fell for three in the third over. Cameos from Brendon McCullum (22) and Martin Guptill (21) went some way to keeping their side in front, but both failed to stick around.
Taylor came in and kept the required run-rate in check, but lost partners all too regularly and the game remained evenly balanced all the way to the final over.
With nine needed off the final three deliveries, Taylor played the stroke of the innings when his paddle shot flew for six. Following a single the BLACKCAPS needed two off the last ball for victory, but could only manage one to send the match to a super-over.
Earlier the BLACKCAPS had taken the upper hand thanks to a commanding display with the ball from both the seam and spin bowlers.
Initially the signs were ominous for the BLACKCAPS as Gayle began to show signs of his menacing best. The dynamic opening batsman terrorised the bowling attack as he jumped to 30 off 14 deliveries.
With Gayle in an uncompromising mood and the West Indies at 60 for two after six overs the alarm bells were ringing, until a peach of a delivery from Tim Southee immediately swung the momentum in New Zealand’s favour.
An off-cutter on a beautiful line and length gripped a little to successfully find the long lost edge of Chris Gayle and McCullum behind the stumps did the rest. From that point on the BLACKCAPS never allowed the West Indies to settle, consistently picking up wickets at big moments.
In for Daniel Vettori who was injured, Roneel Hira made the most of his opportunity with a fine spell of one for 24 from four overs. Fellow spinner Nathan McCullum also made an impact in his four overs taking two for 19.
With the spinners bowled out the seamers took control for the BLACKCAPS, as Doug Bracewell and Tim Southee rampaged through the lower order.
Arguably of most importance was the dismissal of Keiron Pollard for 22. With the big all-rounder beginning to show some intent, Bracewell caught the bottom of Pollard’s bat to send the ball skywards, before falling into the safe hands of Taylor.
Southee was once again prolific at the end of the innings, taking two wickets in the penultimate over to have the West Indies all out for 139.
Bracewell and Southee ended with three wickets apiece to have combined figures of six for 52 off eight overs.