BIRMINGHAM: Rain provided further frustration for Australia, on a day when they dropped David Warner for a bar-room attack on England’s Joe Root, as their Champions Trophy match against New Zealand ended in a no result.
Yesterday’s wash-out at Edgbaston left defending champions Australia facing a tough battle to qualify for the semi-finals.
New Zealand, chasing 244 to win, were on 51 for two off 15 overs when rain stopped play in the Group A clash.
Under the Duckworth/Lewis system for rain-affected matches, a minimum of 20 overs had to be bowled in the second innings for
either side to win this fixture.
But the umpires decided no further play was possible.
The first no result of the tournament saw both sides take a point apiece.
That left New Zealand with three points after their one-wicket win over Sri Lanka and gave Australia their first point of this event after a 48-run loss to hosts England at Edgbaston last week.
Warner misses action
Australia, already without captain Michael Clarke because of a recurrence of his longstanding back problem, suffered a fresh blow before play started when opening batsman Warner was dropped as a disciplinary measure.
Warner was left out following allegations he had physically assaulted Root in a Birmingham bar in the early hours of Sunday morning following the defeat by England.
Adam Voges top-scored with 71 in a total of 243 for eight with George Bailey, Australia’s stand-in captain, making 55.
New Zealand left-arm quick Mitchell McClenaghan took four for 65.
Australia collapsed to 10 for two in what was a repeat of the 2009 Champions Trophy final they won in South Africa.
Shane Watson was caught behind and Phillip Hughes was run out for nought. But coming in at 10 for two, Bailey calmly repaired the early damage.
New Zealand off-spinner Nathan McCullum (two for 46) checked Australia’s progress with the wickets of Matthew Wade and Bailey.
In reply, New Zealand were 26 for two but Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor settled things before the match was halted.
Published in The Express Tribune, June 13th, 2013.