At Queenstown, February 27-March 2, 2013. New Zealand XI won by three wickets. Toss: New Zealand XI.
England were left digesting their first defeat in a first-class tour match since going down to the Indian Board President's XI at Vadodara in February 2006. This setback had seemed unlikely after Bell's serene 158 set up England's big total. Rutherford cemented his Test place with 90 in the reply, in which a late flourish from Corey Anderson restricted the deficit to 77. Gillespie and Wagner, who shared 11 wickets in the match, made regular inroads in the second innings, but the New Zealanders' target of 334 from 90 overs still looked far off at 154 for five after 51. Watling, however, inked in as the Test wicketkeeper, busied himself, putting on 82 in 18 overs with Anderson, then 46 in ten with Neesham. With Wagner forthright at the other end, Watling hauled the hosts over the line with eight balls to spare. Onions had match figures of one for 213 as England's bowlers gave an undistinguished performance. The exception was Swann - and he was soon on the plane home after his long-standing elbow problem flared up again.
Close of play: first day, England XI 357-7 (Bell 127, Broad 6); second day, New Zealand XI 224-6 (Watling 26); third day, England XI 256-9 (Swann 41, Onions 2).
© John Wisden & Co.