New Zealand made short work of West Indies' 177 all out in Antigua, cruising to a seven-wicket win in the Super Eight clash.
New Zealand outplayed West Indies to coast to a seven-wicket victory and leave the hosts needing to make up significant ground if they are to reach the World Cup semi-finals.
The Kiwis cashed in on an efficient performance in the field – bowling West Indies out for 177 in the Super Eight match at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium.
They made no mistake with the bat either, Scott Styris (80 not out) contributing his third 50 of the tournament – and the only one of a largely unengaging match – hitting seven boundaries from 90 balls.
There was movement in the air and a small amount off the pitch for the Kiwis' assortment of pace, medium-pace and spin – and Jacob Oram was one of three bowlers to take three wickets after the West Indies had been put in.
He bagged his three scalps in four overs, and wicketkeeper Brendon McCullum snaffled four catches in a home innings lasting only 44.4 overs.
New Zealand's reply got off to an inauspicious start when makeshift opener Peter Fulton aimed across the outswing of Daren Powell to be bowled for nought second ball.
Powell also had Hamish Marshall driving a catch to mid-off. But Stephen Fleming and Styris steadied the ship until the Kiwi captain was run out by a direct hit from midwicket by his opposite number Brian Lara after being called for a single by his partner.
That was as close as the contest ever got, however, Styris and Craig McMillan closing out the match with more than 10 overs to spare in an unbroken century stand.
Oram had earlier inflicted the most telling damage on a flawed Windies innings.
He got rid of Ramnaresh Sarwan, Marlon Samuels and most importantly Chris Gayle.
The hosts lost their first wicket to Shane Bond, a deserving case after producing plenty of mostly well-directed new-ball pace and swing.
He had more moral victories against Gayle than he did over his victim Shivnarine Chanderpaul, however.
When the breakthrough came it was nonetheless in predictable fashion, Chanderpaul following the full-length swing and edging to second slip – where Styris took a neat catch.
Gayle and number three Sarwan were then watchful almost to a fault in the early stages of their half-century stand, and there was only 27 for one on the board after 10 overs.
Gayle wasted no time tucking into first change James Franklin, though, and the Windies were just beginning to click when Oram (three for 23) found the inside edge as Sarwan attempted to drive.
The resulting catch was a cracker, McCullum having to change direction and dive to his left to collect with an outstretched glove.
When Oram found extra bounce to see off Samuels cheaply via another caught-behind, Lara was urgently required to keep Gayle company.
Unfortunately for the Windies, though, Gayle himself ran out of steam six runs short of his 50 – chopping an innocuous delivery from Oram down on to his stumps.
Bond returned to put the first ball of his second spell in the perfect spot, and a little away movement found the edge of Dwayne Bravo's bat – for McCullum's third catch.
The wicketkeeper had missed his chance to run out Lara on eight – a direct hit at the bowler's end would have done the job after the captain set off for an ill-judged run into the off side.
But McCullum did help to dismiss Lara when he clung on to a faint edge, standing up, as the left-hander tried to drive across a variation off-break from Styris' bag of tricks.
A short-lived attempt at a fightback never got off the ground – and slow left-armer Daniel Vettori got in on the act with two wickets in two deliveries.
Extra batsman Lendl Simmons was stuck with number 11 Corey Collymore, who could last only four balls of what should have been the final six overs before he was bowled by Bond.
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Not going to be enough, is it?
Changes for both teams ahead of The Oval.
England’s Test-match batting is broken. Time to get back to basics.
The WTC scoring system is stupid, but the fix is easy. Get it done.
The Badger lets off steam.
Joe Root is shepherding the ‘righteous’ England team through ‘the valley of darkness’ and must ‘lay his vengeance’ upon those closest to him
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All the innovation, variation and athleticism with sell-out crowds up and down the country – this was arguably the greatest T20 season yet.