22 Feb 2018

Australia clinch Tri Series

5:37 am on 22 February 2018

Australia's new-look Twenty20 side have claimed tri-series honours with victory over New Zealand in a rain-disrupted final in Auckland.

Australian spinner Ashton Agar goes up for an appeal in the T20 Tri Series final against New Zealand at Eden Park in Auckland.

Australian spinner Ashton Agar goes up for an appeal in the T20 Tri Series final against New Zealand at Eden Park in Auckland. Photo: © Copyright Andrew Cornaga / www.photosport.nz Photosport Ltd 2018

Set 151 by the Black Caps, the tourists won by 19 runs under the Duckworth/Lewis method after a second downpour at Eden Park ended the decider with 5.1 overs remaining.

The victory, set up by a man-of-the-match bowling performance from left-arm spinner Ashton Agar (3-27), was soured by another injury to master-blaster Chris Lynn.

The luckless Queenslander dislocated his right shoulder midway through New Zealand's innings after diving to field the ball near mid-wicket and landing awkwardly.

Lynn left the ground assisted by trainers and played no further part in the game.

The 27-year-old will return to Brisbane for further assessment and will be held back from playing in the Pakistan Super League.

Otherwise, it was another triumph for a T20 side re-energised by new talent from the Big Bash and the leadership of stand-in captain David Warner.

Glenn Maxwell was named player of the series for his 233 runs at 116.50.

"You could see that it hurt him to get dropped from that one-day team, and obviously vying for Test selection as well at the start of the summer," Warner said of Maxwell.

"He's put the numbers on the board time and time again this year and we're really, really happy with where he is and his mental state with the game."

Much of the kudos will go to Australia's bowlers, who restricted New Zealand to 9-150 at a ground with a reputation as a batting paradise.

The pocket-sized venue also hosted the two sides last week, with Australia winning by five wickets after scoring 245 in a record T20 international run chase.

New Zealand looked on track for a similar start, reaching 0-46 off four overs after Kane Williamson won the toss and elected the bat.

But pacemen Billy Stanlake and Kane Richardson accounted for dangerous openers Martin Guptill (21) and Colin Munro (29) before Agar ran through the middle order.

Australia were cruising at 0-55 off six overs in reply when a brief but heavy shower halted play.

D'Arcy Short (50 off 30 balls) holed out at long on when play resumed, before spin kings Ish Sodhi and Mitch Santner struck from consecutive overs to give the Black Caps some hope.

Glenn Maxwell (20no) and Aaron Finch (18no) steadied the ship before heavy showers forced play to be abandoned.

The victory lifts Australia to No.2 in the T20 world rankings - trailing first- placed Pakistan on decimal points - having started the series ranked seventh.