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England produced a solid batting performance to post a challenging 172 for six against New Zealand in their Group 1 league match of the ICC World Twenty20 championships here today.
Number three batsman Moeen Ali (36), opener Michael Lumb (33) and middle-order batsman Jos Butler (32) came up with useful contributions to set the foundation for the score, while it was Tim Bresnan's 17 off 8 balls towards the end which took England across the 150-mark after being invited to bat here.
New Zealand skipper Brendon McCullum won the toss and elected to bowl and experienced pacer Kyle Mills straight away got into action, dismissing opener Alex Hales on the third ball of the innings.
But other opener Lumb (33) and Ali (36) didn't allow the early dismissal to affect the team and stitched together a 72-run stand for the second wicket in 44 balls to take England forward.
While Lumb blasted four boundaries and one six in his 24-ball innings, Ali had six hits to the fence and one maximum in his 23-ball stay.
It was Corey Anderson who snapped Ali's wicket in the eight over when he was holed out at deep square leg by Mitchell McClenaghan.
Five balls later, a fine catch by Anderson off McClenaghan's delivery ended Lumb's innings as England slipped to 76 for three.
Eoin Morgan (12) then tried to steady the ship and took England across the 10-mark but he was soon sent back into the hut by Tim Southee. Looking for a big shot, Morgan's mis-timed shot ended up in the hands of Brendon McCullum at mid-off.
Jos Butler provided some support in the middle with his 23-ball 32 laced with four boundaries but he ended up dragging a wide ball onto his stumps as England slumped to 129 for five in 15.4 overs.
Ravi Bopara (24 not out) and Chris Jordon (8) then plundered a six each off Southee to amass 15 runs off his last over. But Nathan McCullum dismissed Jordon in the fourth ball of the next over.
New man Bresnan then brought up the 150 for England and then blasted a couple of fours in the 19th