England claimed victory in the third and final ODI at Eden Park against New Zealand to clinch the series 2-1
Match Report: New Zealand vs England, 3rd ODI, Auckland, Febuary 23
After winning the toss, Alaistar Cook decided to send New Zealand in to bat, and his decision was well backed up by his bowlers as they struck early to put New Zealand on the back foot. Losing three wickets inside the mandatory powerplay New Zealand found themselves in a spot of bother to say the least, Steve Finn and James Anderson striking for the visitors with the former picking up two of the three wickets. New Zealand desperatly needed a partnership at the time and Ross Taylor and Grant Elliot did their best to contribute to the cause. Adding 53 for the fourth wicket to restore some parity, however the partnership could not blossom further as Grant Elliot was run out for 24 with some poor calling from Taylor. Shortly after Taylor himself was dismissed, as he was controversially caught for 28, the third umpire backing his on field collegue despite Hot spot showing no contact with the bat. The Kiwis were struggling at 67-5 and it was left to Brendan McCullum to make sure they ended up with a defendable score. In an innings which included 6 fours and 5 sixes McCullum played a blistering knock of 79 off 68 deliveries. However wickets kept falling at the other end and McCullum was fighting a lone hand. He was eventually dismissed as he was caught on the mid wicket boundary through a fine catch by Anderson meaning New Zealand failed to utilize as many as 37 deliveries. The Kiwis ended up with 185 on the board.
In reply, England got off to a decent start as they avoided any early setbacks whilst scored a good rate as well. The first wicket fell with the score at 42, Ian Bell the man dismissed for 24. New Zealand needed wickets at regular intervals if they were to have any chance of victory and they failed to do so as Cook and Trott came together for a partnership of 67. The Kiwis did however manager to cause a bit of concern to the English as they struck a double blow to the visitors, Both Cook and Trott were dismissed. But the total was simply not imposing enough as England managed to cruise their way to victory with the loss of five wickets.
Scorecard: England 186/5 (Cook 46(67), Southee 3/48) beat New Zealand 185/10 (McCullum 79(68), Finn 3/27)
Player of the match: Steven Finn, England
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