It was win or bust for the ‘Black Caps’ after a timid five-wicket loss to South Africa three days ago while Sri Lanka were seeking a second Group B win after surprising the host nation before losing to England.
On a run-rich Wanderers track, Sri Lanka must score at a rate of 6.32 runs per over to pass the second highest total in the 2009 edition after their 319 against South Africa in the tournament opener.
Jesse Ryder, the 25-year-old wild boy of the New Zealand squad, shrugged off a hamstring problem to make 74 with the aid of a runner in a 58-ball stand that included 10 fours and one six.
But his departure, edging Nuwan Kulasekara to skipper Kumar Sangakkara, triggered a collapse with New Zealand slipping from 125-1 to 161-5 before Martin Guphill and skipper Daniel Vettori regained the initiative.
Vettori averaged more than a run a ball in his 48 before becoming the third victim of 40-year-old Sunath Jayasuriya, whose slow left-arm deliveries caused the Kiwis most discomfort.
Guptill went on to be the second highest scorer with 66 before being bowled by Lasith Malinga and James Franklin, a replacement for injured Jacob Oram, contributed an unbeaten 28 while Sri Lanka wilted in scorching heat.
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