McCullum rallies NZ to 206 against Australia

Nathan McCullum hit a gritty 52 to help New Zealand recover from the loss of several early wickets and reach 206 all out in Friday’s World Cup Group A match against defending champion Australia.

Australia’s pace attack ripped through the top order to reduce New Zealand to 73-6 but McCullum and captain Daniel Vettori (44) led a recovery against the slow bowlers.

Mitchell Johnson returned to the attack and removed McCullum immediately but the Black Caps have a total to defend as they try to deny Australia a 24th straight tournament win.

Johnson finished with 4-33, while Shaun Tait was erratic but took 3-35 -including Jesse Ryder and James Franklin in a maiden.

Brett Lee got rid of Vettori and conceded just 29 runs from eight overs.