England v New Zealand: Taylor, Williamson give tourists 2-1 lead

By Stephan ShemiltBBC Sport
Kane Williamson
Kane Williamson came to the wicket when New Zealand were 36-2
Third one-day international, Ageas Bowl
England 302 (45.2 overs): Morgan 71, Stokes 68
New Zealand 306-7 (49 overs): Williamson 118, Taylor 110
New Zealand win by three wickets
Full scorecard

Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor both made centuries as New Zealand earned a three-wicket victory and a 2-1 series lead over England in the third one-day international at Southampton.

A stand of 206 led the Black Caps to a target of 303 with an over to spare.

England wasted positions of 194-3 and 288-5 to be bowled out for 302.

Eoin Morgan hit 71, Ben Stokes a 47-ball 68 and Joe Root 54, but being bowled out 26 balls short of using the full 50 overs proved to be decisive.

The hosts' collapse was reward for a New Zealand attack that stuck to its task, but also a result of a new positive approach.

Though that brought England their highest ever score in the first ODI and an almost a remarkable run chase in the second, their commitment to aggressive batting contributed to a final slide of five wickets for 14 runs in 23 deliveries.

Former New Zealand captain Jeremy Coney on Test Match Special:
"It's that middle order for New Zealand, with Williamson and Taylor - they don't take as many risks as the rest of the batting order do. While Morgan got to 70 and Root got to 50, they weren't able to carry on.
"I think New Zealand bowled better than they had in the previous matches, and they were rewarded with those late wickets, when England didn't help themselves."

Whilst such mistakes can be expected from a developing side, costly errors in the field are harder to forgive.

Wicketkeeper Jos Buttler reprieved Taylor on 67 and the same batsman was dropped by Stokes at short mid-wicket on 72. Mark Wood was the bowler on both occasions.

Wood was then culpable for the worst drop, a simple chance at mid-off off the bowling of David Willey soon after Williamson had passed 100.

The third-wicket pair took advantage of their good fortune to build New Zealand's highest ever partnership against England in an ODI.

When they came together, the Black Caps were in trouble at 36-2 after openers Martin Guptill and Brendon McCullum were trapped lbw by Willey and Wood respectively. They absorbed the home pressure, then scored freely on a true pitch.

The classy Williamson played some eye-catching drives down the ground, showing deft footwork against the leg-spin of Adil Rashid, while Taylor showed strength square of the wicket on the off side and through mid-wicket.

They were parted when Williamson was well held by Wood at mid-off from the bowling of Willey to depart for 118.

Taylor, who made a second successive century, looked likely to take New Zealand over the line, only to drag on to give Willey a third wicket.

Have you seen our new cricket page?
Click here to have a look and let us know what you think

England built dot balls and Luke Ronchi holed out off Ben Stokes, but Tim Southee lofted over the off side to complete victory.

The relatively close nature of the result further highlighted England's wastefulness - Morgan, Stokes and Root all fell when threatening to lead England to an imposing total.

Morgan and Root shared 105 after England were reduced to 34-2, but as the Black Caps squeezed in the middle overs, the pressure told.

After 24 deliveries without a boundary, Root was bowled off his pads by the left-arm spin of Mitchell Santner, while Morgan missed a slog-sweep at Williamson's off-breaks.

Still, the power of Stokes in harness with Sam Billings, who sparkled with six boundaries in seven balls, seemed set to launch a late assault.

However, when Billings miscued impressive debutant left-arm seamer Ben Wheeler to short third man, Morgan's men began to subside.

Stokes continued to attack, only to lose his leg stump to Wheeler and, eight balls later, England were all out.

Eoin Morgan and Joe Root
Eoin Morgan and Joe Root shared a third-wicket partnerhsip of 105
Ben Stokes
Stokes's 68 included seven fours and two sixes
Ben Wheeler
Ben Wheeler came into the New Zealand side for the injured Trent Boult
Ross Taylor
Ross Taylor completed back-to-back ODI hundreds for the third time in his career

Top Stories