Trent Boult took career best one-day figures as New Zealand completed a tense 24-run win over Australia in Hamilton on Sunday to regain the Chappell-Hadlee Trophy with a 2-0 series victory.
Boult took 6-33 as Australia, who only needed to square the series to retain the trophy, were dismissed for 257 on the final ball of the 47th over as they chased New Zealand’s 281 for nine.
The home side’s innings had been built on Ross Taylor’s 16th ODI century with Dean Brownlie adding his maiden half century in his first ODI innings in more than two years.
Stand-in captain Aaron Finch (56) and Travis Head (53) had put Australia on track for victory but the visitors lost quick wickets after good partnerships before Boult returned to run through the tail.
“I think the collective bowled really well and we managed to take wickets throughout and put pressure on them,” man-of-the-match Boult said.
“It was a good series and great couple of games and we’re happy to have (the trophy) back.”
New Zealand won the first game at Eden Park by six runs but the second in Napier on Thursday was abandoned without a ball being bowled due to an unsafe, wet outfield.
Marcus Stoinis, whose 146 not out in the first game almost singlehandedly clinched victory for Australia, looked like being the key wicket again on Sunday when he was well set on 42 with his side 198-6 in the 40th over.
The 27-year-old, however, did not quite get hold of a flighted delivery from left-arm spinner Mitchell Santner and holed out to Jimmy Neesham at long on.
Pat Cummins (27) and Mitchell Starc (29 not out) threatened to get the visitors home with a 51-run partnership in five overs before Boult struck with three wickets.
“Australia showed why they are number one in the world,” New Zealand captain Kane Williamson said.
“We felt like we had them under pressure but they kept coming at us. So credit to our guys to soaking up that pressure and taking the games deep and coming out the other side.”
Earlier, Taylor’s 107 and Brownlie’s 63 laid the foundation for New Zealand’s innings but the latter’s dismissal sparked a middle order collapse and the hosts slumped to 209-6 in the 41st over.
Santner then provided a valuable 38 runs including two fours and a six to end the 50th and final over, which started with Starc taking two wickets from the first two balls.
“We felt that it was a target we could chase down,” Finch said. “While we had a couple of guys get 50s, they don’t win games at this level.”