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Taylor puts birthday toast on hold in recovery bid

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WATCH - Taylor's spectacular 181* (2:04)

Ross Taylor made an unbeaten 181 off 147 balls to steer New Zealand to a thrilling five-wicket win over England (2:04)

Ross Taylor will postpone his birthday celebrations as he races to be fit for the deciding ODI against England in Christchurch after suffering a recurrence of his leg injury during his monumental 181 in Dunedin.

Diving for the crease on 109, Taylor appeared to aggravate the quad injury that kept him out of the Wellington match although the exact diagnosis will not be known until Thursday. He also suffered cramp, but after being strapped up by the physio was able to see New Zealand to a memorable series-levelling chase.

Taylor, who will be 34 on Thursday, has been carrying a special bottle of wine around with him ready to mark the occasion - but those plans are now being put on hold, with isotonic drinks the main order of the next 48 hours.

"I'm not plugging my birthday, but I did have a very nice bottle of wine in my suitcase which I was going to open but, damn it, don't think I can have it if I'm to give myself any chance of playing on Saturday," Taylor said.

Taylor added that he felt the same pain he suffered in Mount Maunganui when he went down earlier in the series following a series of blows on his legs in Hamilton and during practice, suggesting it was more of a dead-leg issue than a strain. Whether this latest problem is more serious remains to be seen, but the turnaround to Christchurch is just three days.

"We'll just wait and see," he said. "I'll give myself the best chance of playing."

His feat at University Oval was still sinking in shortly after the victory but he said the innings "has to be up there" among his best. He walked in at 2 for 2, with both openers dismissed for ducks, but started to rebuild alongside Kane Williamson before the major stand of 187 with Tom Latham.

It was as that fourth-wicket stand reached about 80 that Taylor really believed the chase was on, aided by the short boundaries which meant the risks of going for the ropes were reduced, while also making a concerted effort to go after Adil Rashid.

"Once we got to about 160-170 I thought if we batted really well we were a chance," Taylor said. "Until then it was just about batting and trying to get a position from where we could win. I thought we were ahead of the game when Colin de Grandhomme came out, he only got 20 but it was a great cameo which meant we could take it deep without taking risks.

"If you lose three wickets in the first 10 you more often than not lose the game so we were able to tick that off, then get a little momentum. We wanted to be a little more attacking against Rashid and I think we did that well today. They had to bring other bowlers back, spin was always going to play a big part and if we could nudge it around it gave us a chance."

Taylor's century was the decisive innings of the match, but the game turned when England collapsed to lost 8 for 46 after Jonny Bairstow and Joe Root had added 190 for the second wicket. At that point England were on target for well over 350 - a chase that Taylor said would have been "unrealistic from 2 for 2" - but instead they barely batted out the overs.

Eoin Morgan insisted it wasn't an example of aiming too high - similar to his comments after the 2015 meeting between these sides where England were bowled out for 302 at the Ageas Bowl with overs to spare - but acknowledged it had been a poor effort at building on an ideal base from the top order.

"I'm a big fan of over-ambition," he said. "We've scored 400 twice, again earning the right. When two guys play out of their skin to do that, we've got to put the cream on the cake and the cherry on top. We were miles away from it today. Our skill level wasn't good enough to take risks that early - whereas it should be."

This was a different style collapse to the ones England have suffered previously at the start of their innings - 20 for 6 against South Africa at Lord's and 8 for 5 against Australia in Adelaide - and Morgan said he wouldn't be overly concerned unless it becomes a pattern.

"We've certainly had collapses of the top order - in the first 10, we've been four or five down," he said. "But certainly when we've earned the right to push for a 370 score, we've not had a collapse like that. Normally one of us has come off.

"That's the way the batting order lines up, and that's the way our template looks. If it continues to be a pattern we'll look into it deeply. But everybody walking off, it's hurting deep that we've not been able to capitalise on that."