Champions Trophy: England beat New Zealand to reach semi-finals

Champions Trophy, Group A, Cardiff
England 310 all out (49.3 overs): Root 64, Buttler 61*, Hales 56
New Zealand 223 all out (44.3 overs): Williamson 87, Plunkett 4-55, Ball 2-31
England won by 87 runs
Match scorecard;Standings

England are into the semi-finals of the Champions Trophy after beating New Zealand by 87 runs with an accomplished all-round display.

On a cold, blustery and sometimes wet day in Cardiff, England had set a total of 310, Joe Root top-scoring with 64 from 65 balls and Jos Buttler making a rapid unbeaten 61.

With their reply at 158-2 after 30 overs and captain Kane Williamson on 87, New Zealand appeared to be timing the chase with precision.

But Mark Wood's clever cross-seam delivery saw off Williamson, and when the experienced Ross Taylor fell 10 runs later England took control.

It means they can afford to lose their final group match, against Australia on Saturday, and still qualify for the last four.

New Zealand must now beat Bangladesh here on Friday and hope Australia do not win, their own rain-abandoned fixture against Steve Smith's men continuing to haunt them.

England a team transformed

When these two sides met at the last 50-over World Cup there was a chasm between them, England seemingly playing cricket from a different, slower era, outplayed by a team alive with innovation.

On Tuesday they produced a true team display: each of their five bowlers picking up at least one wicket, four of their top six batsmen getting in the runs.

Liam Plunkett finished with four wickets, taking three of the last four to fall, but it was arguably Adil Rashid who was the pick, the leg-spinner's 2-47 off his 10 overs a fine display in a ground with short straight boundaries and in weather conditions far from ideal for slow bowling.

Jake Ball had clean-bowled the dangerous Luke Ronchi in the first over of New Zealand's reply, and with Wood's fine dismissal of Williamson and Ben Stokes getting through eight overs unhindered by his recent knee problems, it was a rewarding afternoon for the home attack.

Both Williamson and Taylor appeared unhappy with the behaviour of the pitch, Taylor being hit on the helmet grille by ball that leapt off a length, but it was trepidation about what the ball might do as much as what it actually did that stymied their efforts.

Root and Buttler set the platform

Three of England's top six had made half-centuries and another, Stokes, came within two runs.

There was more disappointment for Jason Roy, the opener making just 13. His last seven one-day international innings have now brought a cumulative total of just 47.

A run-a-ball partnership of 81 between Alex Hales and Root was ended when Hales was bowled by Adam Milne for 56, and Root then went the same way, bottom-edging an ugly pull off Corey Anderson.

Stokes was the next to regret the manner of his dismissal, ramping a short ball from Milne straight down the throat of third man.

It was left to Buttler to accelerate the effort towards the end, one scoop-shot flicked over his own head and on to the television gantry for a brilliant six.

New Zealand seemed content with that target, only for England's bowlers to make a far tougher proposition.

With two assured wins from two, Eoin Morgan's men have underlined their status as pre-tournament favourites and they will head into the knockout stages in bullish mood.

'Stokes batted like Hayden or Waugh' - analysis

Former England spinner Graeme Swann on Test Match Special: "Ben Stokes, who made 48, is batting with an air of arrogance these days. He looked brilliant. It's horrible for a bowler when somebody is so dominant at the other end they are swaggering about the place. He's like Matthew Hayden when he's in form, or Mark Waugh at his best. He's got an arrogant swagger about him."

Former England spinner Vic Marks on TMS: "This was one of England's most polished performances in the field that I can recall. They found something in the pitch the Kiwis didn't discover.

"The seamers were really disciplined. The fielders caught everything which came their way, with the exception of an Adil Rashid caught and bowled. They set the tone at the start, weathered the storm in the middle and got the key wicket of Williamson."

Ex-New Zealand captain Jeremy Coney on TMS: "England have had two very good victories. They played the superior cricket today. They had to handle the cooler part of the day, some very strong wind which they were probably unaccustomed to, they lost the toss but they always looked in control of the game."

'England outplayed us in all areas' - what they said

New Zealand captain Kane Williamson: "I think the nature of the English batting line-up is they bat deep, with a lot of power. To be able to restrict them was not a bad effort but I thought they got to an above-par score.

"I think in all areas England outplayed us today. It was very tough out there but credit to the way they went about their business.

"We were trying to get the partnership, get momentum. We were trying to increase the run-rate to make the last 10, 15 overs a good opportunity to chase down the total."

England captain Eoin Morgan: "Being in the semis is pretty good. We're not satisfied with that, we have a long way to go before we perform to our potential."

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