Ervine century guides Zimbabwe to superb win over New Zealand
Taylor and Williamson continued their remarkable run of form as New Zealand racked up 303 for four, only for Ervine’s dashing innings to carry Zimbabwe to victory with six balls to spare.
The 29-year-old left-hander’s previous best in ODIs was 85, but promoted to the number three position by coach Dav Whatmore, he finished unbeaten on 130 from just 108 deliveries as the hosts chased more than 300 for just the second time in an ODI.
“It has been a hard road for us, and it shows we are capable of winning games,” Zimbabwe captain Elton Chigumbura said.
Williamson, who is captaining New Zealand on the tour in the absence of the rested Brendon McCullum, believed their total would have seen them to victory.
“I thought 303 was enough. It wasn’t easy up front and I thought it was a good effort,” he said. “They outplayed us in all <g data-gr-id="40">areas</g> though, so full credit to them.”
A Zimbabwean victory appeared highly unlikely after Taylor and Williamson added 137 for the third wicket to register their fourth straight century stand in ODIs. Zimbabwe started well enough after winning the toss and electing to bowl, removing openers Martin Guptill and Tom Latham in the opening 10 overs, but their inability to make further inroads left them exposed.
Williamson and Taylor had no trouble in recording their <g data-gr-id="35">10th century</g> stand in ODIs -- a new record for a New Zealand pair.
Taylor finished unbeaten on 112, his third ODI hundred in five matches and his 15th overall, and although Williamson missed out on an eighth ODI century, his controlled 97 was his fifth straight score above fifty in the format.