New Zealand 225 for 7 (Bates 82) beat England 204 (Gunn 73) by 21 runs
Suzie Bates's allround brilliance ensured New Zealand took the early honours in their one-day series against England. She topscored with 82, grabbed three wickets and then held on to the catch that sealed a deserved victory in the opener at Taunton.
New Zealand's 225 looked to be 30 runs short on a placid track - their captain Haidee Tiffen even admitted as much - but they could have reached more, were it not for England's spinners Holly Colvin and one-day debutante Charlotte Russell.
But Bates stood firm, playing straight down the ground and with excellent timing, until she holed out to long-on off Russell in the dying overs. By then, though, playing straight and true, she had glued her side together: steering them through a stodgy patch first up, adding 74 in a key stand with Sara McGlashan (34), and then standing firm while wickets fell around her.
She went on to post 82 before becoming 19-year-old Russell's first international victim. In that time, she and McGlashan had upped the ante and exposed England, who missed the experience of Charlotte Edwards in the field, as they missed a run-out, stumping and catch in the crucial middle overs as their bowling failed to threaten.
On came the spin-twin pocket-rockets and Sussex team-mates Colvin and Russell - who had only taken up off-spin two years ago. Russell, like Colvin in 2005, had a late call into England's squad - she made her debut in the Twenty20 on Thursday - and the decision has immediately paid off.
Colvin's control, meanwhile, eventually paid dividends to take her best one-day haul of 3 for 36. The first was a neat stumping from Jane Smit - removing Haidee Tiffen for 23 - then there were two catches by Claire Taylor at mid-on, removing left-handers Aimee Mason and Amy Satterthwaite, as New Zealand slid from 133 for 3 to 165 for 6. Together, they literally slowed New Zealand right down.
However, Nicola Browne then contributed a breezy 28 before Gunn claimed her second wicket, this one a full toss mis-swept to Russell in the gully. It proved enough. Tiffen's early run-out of the dangerous Sarah Taylor inspired New Zealand, and their ground fielding was superb throughout, including another pinpoint run-out from Tiffen. The day, though, belonged to 19-year-old Bates, who came back with three wickets.
Gunn did her best to hunt down the target with a career-best 73, and with Caroline Atkins, she put the show on the road. Atkins played with urgency and ran well but the lower middle-order couldn't put any stands together. "We just need to carry on with those partnerships," a visibly disappointed Nicki Shaw, the stand-in captain, said afterwards.
An honest Tiffen said: "We pride ourselves on fielding: we're not up to scratch where we have been in the past. It's nice to be on the winning side for once, so long may that continue."
New Zealand have bounced back well from losing the three-match Twenty20 series, but it's still early days in the one-dayers - there are five matches still to come, with the next at Stratford on Sunday.
Sunday 19 August: The second one-dayer between England and New Zealand at Stratford was washed out. Continual bad weather and heavy overnight rain meant no play was possible. New Zealand will take a 1-0 lead into the third match of six, which is at Derby on Thursday.