Trans Tasman Tri-Series, NZ vs ENG, 4th T20I Review: New Zealand trump England by 12 runs in a close contest

England fell short of the target by 12 runs in pursuit of 197.

Kane Williamson
New Zealand batsman Kane Williamson hits out. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

New Zealand have stopped their three-match losing streak in the T20 format by defeating England by 12 runs at the Westpac Stadium in Wellington. Both the teams entered into the game with defeats in their last three games and were yet to get on the board in the tri-series. However, it was New Zealand who managed to stranglehold the visitors in a close contest courtesy some brilliant fielding and bowling at the death.

New Zealand got off to an excellent start after putting in to bat first by the visitors. The opening duo of Martin Guptill and Colin Munro added 39 runs but the latter continued his poor runs and was dismissed in the fifth over by Mark Wood. But Guptill was in the mood and played some delightful strokes on his way to a 65-run knock off just 40 deliveries. Kane Williamson also played his part and smashed the ball all over the park.

He looked to shuffle across the crease as well in his attempt to pace the innings and it worked very nicely for him. He scored an enterprising 72 off 46 balls before being dismissed in the dying stages of the innings. But the debutants Mark Chapman and Tim Seifert lived up to their reputation of hitting the ball hard by smashing 20 and 14 runs respectively. In the end, the hosts posted a mammoth total of 196 runs in their 20 overs courtesy half-centuries from Guptill and skipper Williamson.

Wood was the most expensive bowler conceding 51 runs in his four overs and picked a couple of wickets. Even the leg-spin of Adil Rashid scalped two wickets with Chris Jordan being the only other wicket-taker.

Thrilling run-chase

Jason Roy continued his poor run of form across the Tasman as well and could only score 8 runs. But his partner Alex Hales took the special liking to Trent Boult and collected 20 runs off his over. Even Dawid Malan supported him as the duo added 65 runs in almost six overs. But Ish Sodhi scalped Hales with a short delivery which the batsman aptly pulled it into the hands of deep mid-wicket fielder. Soon, James Vince and the captain Jos Buttler were sent packing thanks to brilliant fielding from the home side.

The contest was far from over though as Malan was looking dangerous even as Sam Billings was dismissed. But David Willey’s arrival changed the complexion of the game completely as he smashed Sodhi out of the park, not once but twice. He was also dropped by Mitchell Santner off the same bowler at long-on and lobbed the ball up for six to add insult to the injury.

The game was well in balance with England needing 37 runs off last three overs when the champion bowler Trent Boult came to the fore. Malan was dismissed by Santner in the previous over but Willey was still posing threat to take the game away from the Kiwis. Boult though bowled a couple of pinpoint yorkers to Jordan and Liam Plunkett which eventually ended the challenge for the visitors. He only gave 8 runs which proved to be the final nail in the coffin for England.

Willey was run-out in the next over until when the match was almost decided. England eventually fell short by 12 runs and could only score 184 runs in their 20 overs. Santner and Southee were the pick of the bowlers as they didn’t give too many runs and also picked key wickets. Kane Williamson was named the Man of the Match for his brilliant knock with the bat and the run-out of Vince on the field.

England have now lost all the three matches in the tri-series and will have to pray that New Zealand should lose to Australia on Friday. If the hosts win their next fixture, England will be crashed out of the tournament. Though even if the Kiwis lose to Aussies, England will have to beat them in the final league game with a good margin to qualify for the final.

Brief Scores

New Zealand 196/5 after 20 overs (K Williamson 72, M Guptill 65; A Rashid 2/36)

England 184/9 after 20 overs (D Malan 59, A Hales 47; M Santner 2/29)

Result: New Zealand won by 12 runs

Man of the Match: Kane Williamson

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