Fifth One-Day International

New Zealand v England 1996-97

At Wellington, March 4. New Zealand won by 28 runs. Toss: New Zealand. New Zealand easily completed their comeback from 2-0 down to share the series. But it was a short-lived triumph for their captain, Germon. Before the day had ended, he had been dropped for the imminent series against Sri Lanka and succeeded by Fleming. The combination of Fleming's leadership and Parore's usefulness as a keeper-batsman had persuaded the selectors Germon was expendable. Once more, the home total fell away, after a splendid 94 from opener Astle, who struck ten fours. But this time it proved far too tall for England, who lacked New Zealand's hunger. Harris, again, offered them nothing to hit. Larsen was only fractionally more generous and two wickets confirmed Astle as star of the show. Atherton tried to lead from the front, until run out by Harris, while Thorpe provided some middle-order substance, but New Zealand's victory would have been more emphatic still without a last-wicket stand of 27 between Gough and Caddick. Russell made his only international appearance of the 14-week tour. Ian Botham joined 30 New Zealand police officers and had his head shaved for charity during the interval. The stunt raised £50,000 for the Child Cancer foundation.

© John Wisden & Co