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England v New Zealand 3rd Test



Third Test, Trent Bridge (day four)
England 364 bt New Zealand 123 & 232 by an innings and nine runs

By Jamie Lillywhite

Kevin Pietersen and Ryan Sidebottom
Pietersen and Sidebottom both had major influences on the match

England secured victory by an innings and nine runs in the final Test to seal a 2-0 series triumph over New Zealand.

They needed barely an hour to capture the remaining five Kiwi wickets, with Ryan Sidebottom taking four of them.

Needing 64 to make England bat again, the tourists added some quick early runs through lusty Jacob Oram strokes.

Oram hit two sixes in 50 from 39 balls, but Sidebottom's swing was too much for the tail and man-of-the-match James Anderson's ninth wicket settled it.

New Zealand's position had the rather despondent air of England's in the infamous Headingley Test in 1981.

It was actually better, as England were then 135-7 and 92 behind in their follow-on, but they had Ian Botham and added 201 for their final three wickets.

Briefly, it appeared that Oram might play some kind of Botham role.

Broad, with the exuberance of youth, a Test fifty and a vibrant blond mane, worked on the theory that Oram is susceptible to the short-pitched delivery.

The surface was really too benign to cause him problems and Oram swatted him away with relative ease.

But it has been the swinging ball that has done the damage in this match, and the canny Sidebottom knew that, picking up 4-12 from his morning spell.

Jacob Oram
Oram briefly scattered the spectators with some mighty, defiant hitting
Debutant Gareth Hopkins got one that both swung and bounced and from then on it was a relative procession.

Skipper Daniel Vettori looked weary from the rigours of another series defeat, no doubt reflecting on the previous Test at Old Trafford, when having been 229 ahead with nine second innings wickets intact, his team were bowled out for 114 and lost by six wickets.

Vettori's own dogged batting form has dipped dramatically, which is another major factor in the outcome of the three matches.

Having made 173 runs in the first three innings during the winter series, the left-hander has scored just 13 in the last two Tests and here he sliced rather tamely to gully.

Sidebottom kept the ball moving in the corridor of uncertainty to oust Kyle Mills and Iain O'Brien, who tentatively prodded to first and second slip respectively.

Fittingly it was Anderson who applied the gloss, with the wicket of every bowler's favourite batsman, Chris Martin.

He was swatted for an almighty six over long-on by Oram, who will no doubt be a dangerous customer in the limited overs matches that follow, but produced the ideal delivery for Martin.

The last man epitomised the general New Zealand frailty against an accurate swinging ball, edging to second slip to put England in good heart for the very different proposition that is Friday's Twenty20 extravaganza.

Meanwhile, England's series victory moved them up to third in the ICC's Test rankings, one point above South Africa and just one point behind second-placed India.

Michael Vaughan's men will move up to second if they beat South Africa later this summer, and India fail to win their forthcoming series in Sri Lanka.

see also
England on course to secure win
07 Jun 08 |  England
Strauss ton inspires England win
26 May 08 |  Cricket
New Zealand in England in 2008
12 May 08 |  Cricket


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