England’s Twenty20 travails continued as a third successive defeat, this time by New Zealand, left their hopes of reaching the tri-series final hanging by a thread.
After back-to-back beatings at the hands of Australia, England hoped for better luck in Wellington but fell 12 short of the hosts’ 196 for five.
Mark Wood will curse the errant throw which spared Black Caps skipper Kane Williamson on nought – he went on to make a match-high 72 and saved much of the punishment for Wood – but the tourists were outmatched across the board.
Baffles me how Martin Guptill doesnât get an IPL contract .... Brilliant Batsman & unbelievable fielder .... !!!!!!!!!— Michael Vaughan (@MichaelVaughan) February 13, 2018
After falling for eight opener Jason Roy has now been dismissed for 10 or fewer in exactly half of his 26 T20 innings for England. That includes a run of five single-figure scores in a row dating back to June.
England completed their quickest ever successful chase on their only previous T20 on this ground, romping home with a massive 44 overs to spare en route to a 10-wicket win in 2013. Top-scorer that day was was Alex Hales (80no), one of just two survivors from the victorious XI alongside Jos Buttler.
New Zealand debutant Mark Chapman has previously played 19 T20s and two ODIs for Hong Kong. By turing out for the Black Caps he became the first Hong Kong international to switch to a full member nation since Dermot Reeve, who won his maiden England call-up in 1991.
New Zealand v Australia (Auckland, February 16)
New Zealand v England (Hamilton, February 18)