The blow for blow
Ben Stokes was moving ominously through the gears when Mitchell McClenaghan came on to bowl during the batting Powerplay. Stokes crunched his first ball straight down the ground but McClenaghan hit back - literally - with a full toss that struck the batsman on the thigh and left him doubled over. Stokes was back on his feet with a grimace and, after a couple of unsuccessful swipes, succeeded in launching McClenaghan well beyond the boundary and almost into a burger stand. A whopper with extra relish.
The lick of paint
Ben Wheeler, on his international debut, started with a wide down the leg side but he was soon making a good impression, following up with six dot balls to Alex Hales. With Jason Roy on strike for his second over, Wheeler produced a more than passable impression of the man he replaced in the side, Trent Boult, swinging a full delivery back into the right-hander and past the bat, only to see it miss off stump by a fraction of an inch. In fact, a bit of seam movement away probably prevented a maiden wicket.
When Mitchell Santner came on to bowl, his career economy rate after two ODIs stood at 9.13. His third ball here was clubbed over long-on by Eoin Morgan, who had hit Santner for four sixes at The Oval and was reluctant to let the bowler improve on those figures, but he came back well thereafter and could have had England's captain out twice. In his second over, Luke Ronchi couldn't collect a leg-side wide with Morgan well out of his ground; then in his third, a low drive didn't stick in Santner's hand as he got down low to his left. Morgan was kept to 12 off 13 deliveries in their personal contest and Santner had a measure of revenge.
Spunky batting and funky fielding are increasingly common features of limited-overs cricket but we almost saw an audacious bit of wicketkeeping from Jos Buttler. Facing Adil Rashid's legspin, Ross Taylor reached out to paddle the ball to leg, only for Buttler to have anticipated the shot and moved across to intercept it. The ball sprung up off the top edge and Buttler stuck out a pre-emptive left paw, managing to divert the ball up but not within his reach to catch at the second attempt.
It would have been tough to call that a genuine chance off Taylor but he was put down twice in short succession to all but end England's chances of suppressing New Zealand in the chase. Both came off Mark Wood's bowling, the first via a thick edge that Buttler could not take one-handed diving to his right; the second was a pull struck powerfully to midwicket, where the ball burst through Stokes' hands. There was a sense of inevitably about the result from there on.
Wood probably felt a little miffed that his efforts had not been better rewarded but that was no excuse for the reprieve he handed Kane Williamson on 109. With David Willey bowling and the keeper up to the stumps, Williamson could not get to the pitch of a drive and ended up chipping it straight to mid-off. The ball was at waist height but Wood missed it at the first attempt, kneed it into the air as he tried to rectify his mistake and then finally dropped it as he crumpled to the floor.