Little to celebrate for Stoinis despite heroics


Marcus Stoinis cut a deflated figure despite a record-breaking innings for Australia as they fell to a narrow six-run defeat to New Zealand at Eden Park.

After taking three wickets as the Black Caps posted 286-9 from their 50 overs, Stoinis then got his side into contention to take the opening match of the series.

He arrived at the crease with Australia 54-5 and that quickly became 67-6 as Sam Heazlett was dismissed by Lockie Ferguson, but with the support of James Faulkner and Pat Cummins the fightback began.

Stoinis hit a sublime 146 not out but ultimately it was in vain as he gradually ran out of partners, Josh Hazlewood the last man to fall as he was run out without facing a ball - despite being at the crease for 26 minutes.

"If you look at the stat book after making 140-odd and taking three-for, it doesn't feel that good," Stoinis said in Auckland. 

"It just shows how much of a team game cricket is and how important winning is to everyone. I'm happy to an extent but probably not what I would imagine.

"As an all-round game, it's what you dream of and think about when you close your eyes before the game. I've had smoother innings than this but this is a different kind of pressure. To put the performance on the board feels good."

Stoinis farmed the strike superbly to keep Australia on target - the all-rounder clearing the boundary 11 times - only for it to become his downfall as Hazlewood came up short.

"My gut feel was I thought he was out but it happened pretty quickly," he added when asked about the run out.

"The plan [with Hazlewood] was for me to face the first four or five and then get a single last ball. 

"But at the end there, the plan was to try to hit a six and get a draw and then leave Josh to get a single to win the game."