England play New Zealand in the 5th one day global on Saturday in what equates to a succeeder takes all contest between the teams.
Jonny Bairstow pulled off a thrilling three-wicket win for England to clinch their record-breaking run-fest one-day global series 3-2 against New Zealand.
But not in this case because English cricket has never felt blither for years as they have slugged out the Royal London series against New Zealand with great skill and commendable spirit.
Williamson soon brought up his half-century off 49 balls.
All-rounder Ben Stokes led England’s attack with three for 52 in a maximum 10 overs on his Durham home ground.
However, out of nowhere, the young Wheeler swung his bat about to keep New Zealand in with a chance.
Guptill came into his own the next two overs with couple of big hits but fell edging one to the wicket-keeper ending his 73 ball knock.
England chose to throw off the shackles and promptly racked up 408 for nine in the first game of the five-match series. The two put on a 94-run stand, and a late cameo from Ben Wheeler, who scored a 28-ball 39, boosted their total to a fighting one.
New Zealand hit back with wins at The Oval and at the Ageas Bowl, before England levelled things up at Trent Bridge on Wednesday, and the previous clamor for a decisive third Test between the sides has nearly been forgotten amid the sheer fun of it all.
However, it was Rashid’s bowling earlier in the day that may have piqued the interest of England’s selectors ahead of the Ashes. David Willey (2-50) was impressive too.
England’s chase got off on all the wrong notes.
First, Alex Hales was brilliantly caught one-handed high to his left by Williamson off Santner, and then Joe Root was stumped by a juggling Ronchi – who collected a painful rebound off his chin in the process.
Santner (3-31) dealt massive blows to the England chase by taking out Root (4) and then the skipper Morgan (0) off successive deliveries in the fourth over.
Rain in the interval meant that England’s target was reduced to 192 in 26 overs.
And when Andrew Mathieson had Jason Roy dismissed off his first ball on debut, England was in all sorts of trouble.
They will depart in especially good heart if Eoin Morgan’s team can prevail on Saturday and edge their run-fest series against the Kiwis 3-2.
Mitchell McClenaghan, out of sorts for New Zealand in this series, took 11 wickets at 15.81 in the corresponding series in England two years ago.
It was Jonny Bairstow though, who stole the show at Chester-le-Street; his 83 not out coming barely 24 hours after he was called up to replace the injured Jos Butler.
“Even though we lost that second game (at headingly), the way the guys went about it was brilliant”.