England ask NZ to bat in tri-series T20

Kristen Gonzales
February 15, 2018

Nasser Hussain branded England "ordinary" and "headless" after they suffered a 12-run defeat against New Zealand in Wellington.

On a pitch that appeared worn and torn, Buttler won the toss and elected to bowl, only for Guptill and Williamson to put on 82 for the second wicket partnership.

New Zealand s move to shore up the batting also paid off as former Hong Kong global Mark Chapman made a useful cameo of 20 off 13 on his New Zealand debut. Alex Hales along with Dawid Malan provided some stability in the run chase and with a partnership of 65 runs where Hales played the role of aggressor as he took 20 runs of Boult's over to take England's score to 50 in 5 overs.

Dawid Malan (59 off 40) blazed away at the end before spinner Mitchell Santner (2-29) did his regular thing to entice a false stroke, then Trent Boult charged in to skittle Chris Jordan and Liam Plunkett in successive deliveries to clinch it.

Australia have already reached the decider in Auckland next week after beating first the Black Caps and then England twice in their opening three matches.

They finished on 184 for nine and will bow out of the series should New Zealand beat Australia on Friday or if they fail to defeat the Kiwis in Hamilton 48 hours later.

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Mark Wood will curse the errant throw which spared Black Caps skipper Kane Williamson on nought - he went on to make a match-high 72 and saved much of the punishment for Wood - but the tourists were outmatched.

He hit 3 sixes and 6 fours in his 65-run innings which came in 40 balls. Liam Plunkett was rusty on his return from a hamstring strain; Jordan was driven for two sixes in the last over by the second NZ debutant Tim Seifert, who like Chapman gave New Zealand's innings a final thrust with a couple of sixes.

De Grandhomme went first ball after he was brilliantly caught by Chris Jordan on the boundary when the pace bowler leapt to take a one-handed catch before landing just inside the rope. We had to play very good cricket and we did that today'. It was important we assessed the wicket.

England stand-in captain Jos Buttler was gutted to have lost once again, and said: "[Performance with the ball?] "Maybe 10-15 too many, that proved to be the difference, the wicket played a lot better and it was a good game.

'We had a fantastic start, Hales can rival anyone in the world when he's in that kind of form, ' Buttler, who made just two from four balls, said. "[Need a favour from Australia?] That's what we need now, so we'll wait and see what happens".

Other reports by TheSundaySentinel

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