Wardlaw impresses as Scots push New Zealand close
Cleckheaton opening bowler Iain Wardlaw claimed three wickets in Scotland’s opening game at the ICC Cricket World Cup in New Zealand on Monday.
The 29-year-old produced his impressive bowling display as Scotland gave co-hosts New Zealand a scare before slipping to a three-wicket defeat in Dunedin.
The day did not begin well for the Scots as they lost their opening four wickets from the first 29 deliveries of the match and were reduced to 12-4.
Matthew Machan and Richie Berrington led the Scotland recovery, sharing a 93-run stand as both reached half centuries.
However, another flurry of wickets, with six falling for 33 runs, saw Scotland eventually bowled out for 142.
Wardlaw was the last Scotland batsman out, lbw to Daniel Vettori, first ball, a fourth golden duck of the Saltires’ innings.
The majority of the 4,684 sell out crowd at the picturesque University Oval in Dunedin, were anticipating a regulation win for the Black Caps but they hadn’t accounted for Wardlaw leading a Scotland fightback.
The Dewsbury-born opening bowler claimed the wicket of Martin Guptill for 17 and the prize scalp of New Zealand captain Brendan McCallum for 15, both caught behind by wicketkeeper Matthew Cross in a lively opening spell.
Wardlaw also picked up the wicket of Grant Elliott, again caught by Cross, who broke a record for the most One Day International catches by a Scotland wicketkeeper.
Wardlaw also claimed a fine catch in the deep to dismiss Corey Anderson off the bowling of Joshua Davey.
Wardlaw ended with 3-57 before New Zealand breathed a sigh of relief when Vettori edged the Cleckheaton man away for the winning boundary as the home side edged to a three-wicket victory and collect their second win of tournament.
Wardlaw will hope to lead the Scotland bowling attack in their second Pool B match, against England in Christchurch on Monday before they face winnable matches against Bangladesh and Afghanistan.