Birmingham, Jun 26: James Neesham 97 off 112 unbeaten (5 fours, 3 sixes), Grandhomme and Neesham excellent 132 run stand for sixth, took New Zealand to a respectable 237/6 in 50 overs against Pakistan in the ICC Cricket World Cup on Wednesday.
Skipper Williamson 41 off 69 (4 fours) and Grandhomme 64 off 71 (6 fours, 1 six) also played a vital role in bringing up score to a challenging total.
Earlier, New Zealand won the toss and opted to bat as the Black Caps started on a poor note with openers Martin Guptill and Colin Munro managing just 5 runs.
Mohammad Amir gave a breakthrough sending Guptill early in 2nd over. Guptill 5 came in 4 balls (1 four). Guptill's early exit, skipper Kane Williamson took charge and along with Colin Munro chipped in 19 run stand for the second wicket.
Colin Munro had a short stay at the crease before going down to Shaheen Shah Afridi caught by Haris Sohail in 7th over. Munro scored 12 off 17 (2 fours).
Then came another partnership of 14 runs for the third wicket between Ross Taylor and Williamson, but it was another jolt for New Zealand when Taylor was caught at first slip in 9th over by Sarfaraz Ahmed with Shaheen taking his second wicket.
Taylor scored 3 off 8. New Zealand's third wicket went down 38.
For fourth wicket Williamson and Tom Latham did a little effort to put on just 8 runs on the board, when Latham was sent back in 13th over with Shaheen bagging his third wicket. Latham 1 off 14 deliveries
With Latham's departure Willamson and James Neesham further took the score to 37 runs for fifth wicket looking for a big partnership as New Zealand batsman struggled from the very start against Pakistan bowlers, however it was Willamson who kept his cool at the other end running the score board.
However, Willamson who fell 9 runs short of half century was stopped by Shadab Khan in the 27th over.
Williamson 41 off 69 (4 fours). New Zealand's score was 83/5.
Meanwhile, New Zealand's 100 came up in the 32nd over. Neesham also went on to score his half century 50 in the 40th over his sixth ODI half century a vital for his team.
Then in 42nd over brilliant 100 run stand came between Grandhomme and Neesham. In 45th over Grandhomme also playing his part came with fifty.
Excellent partnership between Grandhomme and Neesham were the game changers for New Zealand adding 132 runs for sixth wicket.
New Zealand lost its sixth wicket when Grandhomme was run out in 48th over at 64 off 71 balls (6 fours, 1 six.)
Neesham brilliant 97 off 112 and Santner 5 remained unbeaten taking New Zealand to a respectable 237/6 in 50 overs.
Shaheen Shah Afridi 3/28, Mohammad Amir 1/67, Shadab Khan 1/43 were the wicket takers for Pakistan. (UNI)