Chittagong, Mar 22: New Zealand started their World Twenty20 campaign on a positive note after beating England by nine runs via Duckworth-Lewis method in a Group 1 league match that was called off following heavy rain and thunder storm at the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium here today.
After restricting England to 172 for six in their stipulated 20 overs, New Zealand were cruising at 52 for one in 5.2 overs when heavens opened up, interrupting the match.
With heavy rains unabated, play could not be resumed and the game was abandoned by the umpires. When rain stopped play, New Zealand were nine runs ahead of England at that stage.
It was skipper Brendon McCullum, who pocketed the win for the Kiwis by blasting two sixes and a four in the fifth over off England captain Stuart Broad to put them ahead before rain interrupted play.
Chasing 173 to win, McCullum (16 not out) and opener Kane Williamson (24 not out) added 23 runs off 11 deliveries for the second wicket after the dismissal of opener Martin Guptill (11) in the fourth over.
Earlier, England produced a solid batting performance to post a challenging 172 for six against New Zealand in their campaign opener.
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.
New Zealand skipper 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.