NZ win first T20 against West Indies
The winning feeling continued for the Black Caps in the Caribbean as they claimed the first Twenty20 cricket international via the Duckworth-Lewis method at Roseau, Dominica.
Chasing the West Indies' 132-8 off a rain-reduced 18 overs, New Zealand were 117-4 off 15 overs amid showers and gloom when the umpires called time, giving the tourists a 12-run win.
Captain Brendon McCullum (40 off 35 balls) had the Black Caps on target and Ross Taylor (28 not out off 20) ensured no anxious moments. Most interest for New Zealand involved allrounder Jimmy Neesham, promoted to open the batting and on trial for that role at the 50-over World Cup.
It didn't come off as Neesham faced eight balls for 11, blasting Krishmar Santokie for six and four off successive deliveries, before he was yorked by the left-armer.
Light rain continued, which helped the New Zealand chase as the home bowlers struggled with the slippery ball.
McCullum made up for the early loss of Neesham, guiding New Zealand to 95-2 in the 13th over before he was caught on the boundary. Corey Anderson (15 off 9) hit out late and Taylor blasted two sixes to keep them ahead of the Duckworth-Lewis rate.
Sent in to bat, West Indies lost regular wickets in maintaining a barely par run rate of 7.33, after downpours forced a lengthy delay at Windsor Park.
New Zealand's new ball duo Tim Southee and Trent Boult continued their impact from the 2-1 test series victory to give their batsmen an achievable target.
outhee (2-20) was the standout again, using the short ball to good effect with a liberal sprinkling of slower deliveries. He claimed the key wickets of power hitters Dwayne Smith (8) and Kieron Pollard (16), each caught on the mid-wicket boundary.
Boult (2-28) also did a handy job as New Zealand picked just three frontline bowlers and allrounders Neesham and Corey Anderson, with legspinner Ish Sodhi making his T20 international debut.
Sodhi (1-35 off three) was a mixed bag, but removed West Indies topscorer Andre Fletcher who clouted 52 off 39 balls including four sixes.
Test wicketkeeper BJ Watling was included as a batsman only, with Luke Ronchi taking the gloves. Mark Craig, Neil Wagner, Hamish Rutherford and Peter Fulton were the others omitted.
Both sides took contrasting approaches to the first of two T20 internationals to end the tour.
West Indies were without Chris Gayle (rested) and Dwayne Bravo (shoulder) but summoned their T20 specialists Darren Sammy, Smith, Fletcher, Pollard, Santokie, Sunil Narine and Samuel Badree while New Zealand retained their 15-man squad from the test series.
It showed the T20s weren't a huge priority for the tourists who didn't summon their short format frontliners Nathan McCullum, Kyle Mills, Mitchell McClenaghan and Martin Guptill.
The second and final match is at the same venue early tomorrow (6am NZT).