New Zealand v England, 2nd ODI, Napier February 20, 2013

Anderson and Root deliver big win


England 270 for 2 (Root 79*, Cook 78, Trott 65*) beat New Zealand 269 (Taylor 100, McCullum 74, Anderson 5-34) by eight wickets
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

England marched to a business-like eight-wicket win in Napier, completing their second-highest successful run chase against New Zealand in the process, to square the series at 1-1 after an unruly burst from Ross Taylor and Brendon McCullum had threatened Alastair Cook's masterplan. Cook and Jonathan Trott made solid half-centuries, while Joe Root twinkled with impudent brilliance in top-scoring with an unbeaten 79 but it was James Anderson's 5 for 34 that set up victory on an excellent batting surface.

Having asked his bowlers to keep New Zealand to a manageable total, Cook was rewarded with early wickets and a modest run rate, only for Taylor's seventh ODI hundred to provide a rallying standard and McCullum to launch a familiar riposte. The fifth-wicket partnership was outside England's parameters of acceptability but after McCullum holed out off Stuart Broad for 74 the last six wickets fell for 26 runs, as they regained control of the scenario.

The combined aggression of McCullum and Taylor with the bat, putting on 100 in 52 balls, had brought New Zealand back into the match but they both put down straightforward chances off Root. The first, a skier to McCullum, came when Root, on 25, top-edged an attempted pull at Tim Southee towards short fine leg and although the wicketkeeper made his ground, he misjudged the trajectory and failed to get his gloves under the ball. The next delivery, Root ramped the ball for a flat four through the same part of the ground and the fuse had been lit: 12 balls later, he had reached his fifty, accelerating past senior team-mate Trott with a cheeky "Meep! Meep!", like a Yorkshire roadrunner.

His innings blended grace and power, with hefty cuts and pulls offset by lissome flicks and cultured drives. Such was the quality, it's doubtful the man whose place in the side he currently occupies, Kevin Pietersen, could have finished more stylishly, as Root and Trott combined for a decisive 121-run stand to continue the trend of reverses that has seen the teams swap victories over five limited-overs contests on the tour so far. His third half-century also made Root the first player to start their ODI career with six successive scores of 30 or more.

Not only did he upstage the contributions of his own team-mates, in what was an improved all-round display, Root also overshadowed Taylor's first significant score since coming back into the New Zealand team. After a slow start, in which New Zealand were 21 for 2 after the opening Powerplay and only reached their 100 in the 30th over, McCullum whirled about the crease with all the violence of a Quentin Tarantino shootout scene while Taylor, more the Gary Cooper type, calmly knocked it around at the other end.

Discussions about Taylor's form had begun to overshadow the positive of his return, so this was an important innings for the New Zealand No. 4, even if it came in defeat. In his four previous innings, he had made 45 runs but here he progressed to his first international half-century since scoring 142 and 74 in his last match as captain, the Colombo Test in November. His ousting may still smart on a personal level but the detente can only be good for McCullum, Taylor's replacement, who will head to Auckland seeking a victory that would give him back-to-back ODI series wins at the start of his tenure.

After a level-headed, recovery stand of 72 with Kane Williamson, Taylor began to add some impetus, slugging Broad over deep midwicket for the first six and then sweeping Graeme Swann hard in front of square. He was joined in the middle by McCullum five balls into the batting Powerplay, after Grant Elliott had top-edged Steven Finn to deep square leg, and the pair were soon exchanging fist bumps in the middle. Should they reach the level of the brotherly bum-tap anytime soon, then all will be considered well within New Zealand cricket.

McCullum's fifty came from 26 balls - and that included just a single from his first seven - as Swann, Chris Woakes and then Broad were each targeted in succession. Swann's final over disappeared for 17 and included a six so dismissive that McCullum managed to crash the ball over extra-cover even as he slipped and lost his footing; Woakes and Broad then went for 21 and 20 respectively. England had been criticised for bowling too short at McCullum in the series so far but he tore up their plans to go full, as Broad was twice thumped down the ground in searching for the yorker.

Such was the volte face in scoring rates, that while the two opening bowlers, Finn and Anderson, went at less than three-and-a-half an over, the other three all conceded above six. The last time these two teams met at Napier, they split 680 runs precisely down the middle, with Luke Wright keeping New Zealand to six off the final over to force a tie. Paul Collingwood, Dimitri Mascarenhas, Owais Shah and Wright all bowled that day, exactly five years ago, but Anderson was the most expensive, with 1 for 86.

How things have changed. Anderson, fresh from passing Ian Botham as England's leading wicket-taker in international cricket, had talked of bowling until he was 40 before the match. You suspect even as an Oldsmobile he would cruise in smoothly and more experienced drivers than BJ Watling have nicked to first slip pushing at Anderson's length ball, which just veered away enough to take the edge in the seventh over. Hamish Rutherford, on debut, also fell early to Anderson, as the new-ball pair denied the batsmen width.

Finn was trotting in off a shorter run-up in an attempt to cure his knock-knee problem but showed no lack of pace and perhaps a touch more control - though he still managed to clip the stumps at the non-striker's end later in the innings. McCullum cracked the delivery for four and Cook received short shrift when asking Rod Tucker if it should not have been called dead-ball.

When the first bowling change came, Anderson had figures of 6-2-11-2. Finn had also conceded 11 from his six-over spell and New Zealand had to attempt to force the pace against Woakes, Broad and Swann. Thanks to McCullum and Taylor, they attained respectability but were bowled out with seven balls unused and, ultimately, England's Root made it a rout.

Alan Gardner is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Nicholas on February 22, 2013, 21:40 GMT

    @JG2704: Seriously? Root for Nick Compton? Noooo - definately with you on this one. Give Root a run in tests, yes - but why for my namesake? Yeah selectors need a hiding if that goes through... Are they tired of their revolving door policy for the number 6 position already?

  • John on February 22, 2013, 21:13 GMT

    @R_U_4_REAL_NICK on (February 22, 2013, 20:34 GMT) Wright has a poor average (early 20s) in ODIs for England but actually has a better SR (89.29 compared to 86.75 and 84.82) than KP and Morgan in this format and this was when he was playing alot out of his favoured position and he is now IMO a much improved player. I think re the Broad thing - you should be aiming it more at the selectors for playing him when he's obviously not 100%. He looked decent in most of the T20S but he seems to be holding back in the ODIs. If he is not bowling at 100% he shouldn't be playing but Eng are by their nature too loyal to under performaing players. There are rumours that Root will replace Nick in the test series and while I'm all for Root coming into the test side , Nick would not be the player to make way.

  • Nicholas on February 22, 2013, 20:34 GMT

    @JG2704: well argued mate - cheers for the feedback. 2 spinners eh? One can only ever wish... They were so reluctant to try this even in India! Wright does well in T20's, but not so much ODI's; I'm definately not saying he shouldn't ever be considered again, but I think it will be a hard fight before he's picked again. I am very harsh on Broad, but this boils down mostly to the fact that I don't believe England have such an empty cupboard as to justify bringing over a less-than-fit, out-of-form Broad to NZ!

  • Mark on February 22, 2013, 12:07 GMT

    @jmcilhinney on (February 22, 2013, 11:15 GMT) - A bit of a cop out there! It is easy to dissect the pros & cons of each player individually but the skill is to come up with the best balanced team. I am only asking that you stick your neck out for your current best ODI XI with a returning KP - don't worry the England players and management are not hanging on every word!

  • John on February 22, 2013, 11:53 GMT

    @R_U_4_REAL ctd - balance of my ODI side would be 5 batsmen Cook (capt) + Root (for his versatility- floating batsman+bowling a few overs) nailed on.Buttler WK.Leaves 3 batting spots.So I'd go with either Bell or Trott and 2 from KP,Morgan,Wright,Hales,Bairstow.Jonny is an exceptional fielder too so there are arguments on that front.Anyway this would be near to my side at the moment

    Cook,(KP+Bell or Trott),Wright,Morgan,Buttler,Root (as a floater), Swann,Tredwell,Jimmy, Finn.

    2 pacers ,2 spinners and 1 spin option and one medium pace option , although I'm still not 100% that that's enough bowling.If Broad'S fully fit (big IF) I'd have him there instead of maybe Wright or Morgan but I'd like to see how Hales and Wright do in ODIs for Eng 1st.Maybe in a 4 match series we could try 2 games with Bell at 2,Wright at 3 and 2 with Hales at 2,Trott at 3 and see how it pans out.Wright slightly edges it for his bowling but I'd like to see the 2 guys with highest ind T20 scores given a try

  • John on February 22, 2013, 11:32 GMT

    @ R_U_4_REAL_NICK - re batting , I'd say there is no definite right or wrong way. I personally would not have Cook,Bell and Trott in the same OD side. There are also 2 arguments. The pro 3 accumulators will say they do the groundwork for the strikers to finish off the inns (when it works) and when it doesn't work , it's because the finishers have not done their jobs. Against that would be the argument that it's the strikers who bolster the RR and when we fail in setting/chasing targets it's because the accumulators have been left too much to do by the slow starters. Your view in splitting up the accumulators was a fair compromise but I'd still prefer only 2 of the 3 in the side. I like Root alot in 50 overs as I think he can do both the accumulator role and the role of the guy who ups the tempo

  • John on February 22, 2013, 11:32 GMT

    @ R_U_4_REAL_NICK - Morning, 5 bowler for an England test side - how ludicrous (joke) . Seriously , I know in some ways 5 reliable bowlers is as if not more important in ODIs because in tests , if 2 or 3 bowlers are ripping through a batting line up they can keep going until the captain feels they are tiring or becoming less effective. In ODIs bowlers can only bowl a certain number of overs. If there was no restrictions we could do your team no problem but I would not rely on Root to bowl 10 overs every game. Re Broad , I think you are a little harsh on him. When he is fit , he'd be right up there. The problem is that in the last year he has not been fully fit and when he's showing signs of losing that zip etc Eng should be replacing him. A peak/ fully fit Broad would be in my Eng side every time

  • John on February 22, 2013, 11:15 GMT

    @zummerrset on (February 22, 2013, 9:10 GMT), we can be fairly sure that Cook's not getting left out and you'd expect KP to come back in. You could make a case for leaving out any of the other four and not be wrong. Whichever one it is may turn out to be a mistake. Fortunately for me, I don't have to make that decision and my opinion on the matter carries no weight.

  • Mark on February 22, 2013, 9:10 GMT

    @ jmcilhinney on (February 21, 2013, 23:55 GMT), So you suggest 5 bowlers(which would be great) some of whom can bat a bit which leaves 5 batting places and a wicketkeeper. So back to my original point - of Cook, Bell, Trott, KP, Morgan & Root who would you leave out?

  • Andrew on February 22, 2013, 4:41 GMT

    @JG2704 on (February 21, 2013, 8:26 GMT) - re: ODI bowling. I think I have said before, I think succession plans for Anderson & Swann need to be in place for the ODI side. I am concerned about Swann's elbow (didn't trouble him in India, but when you winning everything feels good), & with Anderson, he is now at the age where pace bowlers do pick up injuries even though Anderson always seem to be within himself. I suppose though the 2015 W/Cup would be the goal for those two. @ jmcilhinney on (February 21, 2013, 4:48 GMT) - I think particularly his ODI achievements are far above his abilities at this point, but I think Test-wise, he will be a bit like M Clarke (not style-wise) where he debuted with a FC ave around 38/39 - the same as Root. He SHOULD develop along over time (with a few slumps along the way), to be a class batsmen. @landl47 on (February 21, 2013, 5:26 GMT) - there has been a revolving door in the #6 spot for Eng for a while, I s'pose if your good enuff your old enuff!