New Zealand vs England
By five wickets in the end, and with the small matter of 75 balls to spare. Root hits the winning run, tucking a Mills short ball through mid-wicket with a calm pull shot. After his whirlwind knock in Napier the Yorkshireman showed a cool head to see the tourists over the line and clinch a 2-1 series victory.
Over 37 - England 185/5 (Root 27, Woakes 3)
The scores are now level. Woakes gets them there with a flick through mid-wicket for a couple, Root having picked up four at the start of the Franklin over by driving a real long half volley to the cover boundary. He would, though, have probably been run out by a direct hit when sneaking a single to Brendon McCullum. Good idea to pick the wicketkeeper out in the field.
Over 36 - England 178/5 (Root 22, Woakes 1)
Just a solitary single from the Mills over - England now need eight more from a further 84 deliveries. Remember their attention shifts to Test cricket after this, with the first match of the series getting underway in Dunedin on March 6. Both these two at the crease now for the tourists could be playing in that game.
Over 35 - England 177/5 (Root 21, Woakes 1)
Five runs push England into single figures - nine needed as the batting powerplay has to be taken. Root on strike and again impressing, showing his maturity with another solid knock. If England need to move across to the other island for their next game, I suggest Root could probably walk across the water to get there.
Over 34 - England 172/5 (Root 17, Woakes 0)
Southee finishes his spell, taking 3-48 from his 10. Good effort from him, always seems to pick up wickets in one-day cricket. England, meanwhile, are labouring a little in getting over the finishing line here. Still another 14 runs required.
The Buttler won't be there at the end, splicing a bouncer from Southee high enough into the air for wicketkeeper Watling to run in and take a superb diving catch. Woakes is now in at seven to try and see this game through to a conclusion.
Over 33 - England 171/4 (Root 16, Buttler 3)
Buttler gets off the mark from the second delivery he faces, whipping Ellis through mid-wicket for three runs. The slow outfield denies him a boundary. England now need a further 15 for victory.
Morgan is stunned when Mills hangs on to a beauty at fine leg. The left-hander nailed a hook shot right out of the meat of the bat, but somehow Mills takes a step or two bat and then sticks his hands above his head to reel in the ball. All this from a man who a few overs ago couldn't get down low enough to stop a drive from the same batsman. Morgan looks stunned, so to some degree do Mills' team-mates. Bring out the Buttler!
Over 32 - England 167/3 (Root 15, Morgan 39)
England haven't beaten New Zealand in a one-day series in New Zealand since 1992. Morgan is trying to end the wait in a hurry now, advancing to Southee and slapping the seamer straight down the ground for a crunching four. He then cashes in on the extra delivery following a dubious wide, slapping the miffed seamer over long-on for six more. Just 19 needed now by England, only the 32 overs to get them in...
Over 31 - England 153/3 (Root 14, Morgan 28)
Root nicks the strike with a single off the last ball of the Ellis over. He's going along at a strike-rate in the 30's, Morgan, meanwhile, is at 155.55. Anyway, time for a DRINK at Eden Park - at least they did have to turn the lights on at the ground.
Over 30 - England 151/3 (Root 13, Morgan 27)
Maiden from Southee to Root. Does that six balls show England are panicking as this run-chase draws to a close? Is there a chance they could falter at the last? No. No there isn't. It just a matter of when, not if, they win this match.
Over 29 - England 151/3 (Root 13, Morgan 27
Morgan manages to put Ellis over the top of mid-on for four with just one hand on the bat, then miss-times a pull so badly to finish the over that he nearly cue-ends it to cover. Root, meanwhile, just goes about his work with the minimum of fuss, picking off the singles to take England closer to a series victory.
Over 28 - England 144/3 (Root 11, Morgan 23)
Yep, as expected Morgan is going to open his shoulders. He plants Nathan McCullum's off-spin about 10 rows back at long-off for a six, then picks up a four from the next ball with an ugly swipe that Mills fails to stop at mid-on - it was like he was going down in stages to try and get something behind the ball.
Over 27 - England 132/3 (Root 10, Morgan 12)
Four easy singles for England - get the feeling, though, that Morgan doesn't want to win this with a series of ones. Attention in the commentary box is already turning to the Test series - Simon Doull has heard that Peter Fulton - or Two Metre Peter as he's also known - could be picked to open the batting for the hosts, who will of course be without the injured Martin Guptill.
Over 26 - England 128/3 (Root 8, Morgan 9)
Southee is bowling to a plan against Morgan - there's a packed off-side field and he's pitching it up looking for a drive to feed the two slips. Morgan duly obliges with the shot not once but twice, both times sending the ball to the boundary. Worth a go from New Zealand, but the two fours means the fat lady needs to start warming up.
Over 25 - England 120/3 (Root 8, Morgan 1)
Root cuts gloriously for four - sign of a good player when you've got time to pick your spot perfectly in a packed field. England need another 66 as they reach the halfway stage of their innings.
Over 24 - England 116/3 (Root 4, Morgan 1)
Morgan is off the mark immediately, albeit in streaky fashion with a thick edge straight to where a second slip would have been stationed. Root looks a bit more certain when he drives, getting a pair of runs with a shot that goes square of the wicket. He also nicks the strike with a run to third man off the final ball. Still, a good over from Southee, who has now picked up two in two.
Captain Cook is sunk by a delivery from around the wicket, Southee getting the England skipper to nick off three runs shy of a half-century. At least Eoin Morgan won't hang about in pursuit of this total.
Over 23 - England 112/2 (Cook 47, Root 1)
Just a single off the Mills over. England need a further 74 runs. Little more to add, really. Did I tell you I once met Sir Trevor Brooking at a table tennis match? No? Well, now you know.
Over 22 - England 111/2 (Cook 46, Root 1)
Root - England's new bright young thing - is in at no 4 and presented with two men catching in at mid-wicket. Southee bowls full and straight until he can't help but have a go with a bouncer, allowing the Yorkshireman to pull impressively out to the man at deep square leg to get off the mark. Cook, though, keeps the strike with a single off the final ball of the over with a tickle to fine leg.
- 23rd Feb 2013
- England won the toss and elected to bowl.
- Eden Park, Auckland
- C B Gaffaney and S Ravi
england BATTING CARD
|Cook||c Watling b Southee||46|
|Bell||c H.D. Rutherford b Ellis||24|
|Trott||c Watling b Southee||38|
|Morgan||c Mills b Ellis||39|
|Buttler||c Watling b Southee||3|
|Total||37.3 Overs||186 - 5|