Steve Smith’s magnificent 89, his first major knock in Australia colours after serving a one-year ban due to the ball-tampering scandal in the Cape Town Test, went in vain as Will Young blasted 130 and gritty fifties from Tom Latham and George Worker helped New Zealand defeat Australia in the second warm-up game ahead of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 at the Allan Border field in Brisbane, Queensland on Wednesday. Australia had won the first game comfortably with David Warner contributing along with skipper Aaron Finch. However, in the second game of the three-match series, it was a different story altogether.
Australia agreed to bat by mutual agreement after bowling in the first game. Adam Zampa and Pat Cummins were rested for this game. Warner, promoted to open the batting, was dismissed for a six-ball duck by Doug Bracewell. Aaron Finch, who had a fifty in the first match, was dismissed for 16 by Bracewell again but a solid 63-run stand between Usman Khawaja and Shaun Marsh revived the Australian team. Marsh was scratchy in his knock and when Daryl Mitchell got rid of him for 28, New Zealand threatened to come back in the contest. However, Smith joined Khawaja and the duo took the attack to the New Zealand bowlers.
Khawaja went past fifty but fell to Blair Tickner but Smith and Glenn Maxwell raised the tempo. Smith smashed four big sixes while Maxwell was aggression personified as they notched up 277/6. Bracewell was the star with 3/45 and in response, Mitchell Starc struck early by removing Hamish Rutherford for a first ball duck. However, George Worker and Will Young steadied the ship with some attacking batting.
Worker, who had hit a fifty in the previous match, continued his great work with yet another fifty. However, in his second spell, Starc struck again to remove Worker but Will Young continued on his merry ways and shared yet another solid stand with Tom Latham gave New Zealand a great platform. Young scored a century and Latham struck a solid fifty and despite Young getting runout for 130, New Zealand coasted to victory with 16 balls to spare.
The third and final warm-up game between the two sides will also be played at the Allan Border field in Queensland.