England’s Ben Stokes unleashed a batting masterclass during the third ODI against New Zealand at The Oval in London, wreaking havoc on the Kiwi bowlers. Trent Boult was the only silver lining for the Blackcaps in an otherwise dismal performance.

England’s initial struggles and Boult’s early success

New Zealand’s Tom Latham won the toss and elected to field first, gaining an advantage in the game. However, England’s start was less than ideal, with Boult striking in the very first ball of the innings. Jonny Bairstow was the first to depart as he flicked the ball off his toes, sending it straight to backward square. Devon Conway made an exceptional leaping catch to his left to dismiss Bairstow.

The troubles continued for England as Joe Root was bowled out by Boult for just 4 runs. Root’s footwork was found wanting as he left the gate open, and the ball, bending back late, cannoned off his inside edge and into the leg stump. Root reacted with self-admonishment as he threw his head back in frustration. These early wickets left England at 13/2 in only the third over of the match.

Ben Stokes and Dawid Malan’s spectacular partnership

Nevertheless, a remarkable 199-run partnership between Stokes and Dawid Malan for the third wicket turned the tide of the game and placed immense pressure on the New Zealand bowlers. Boult struck again, dismissing Malan in the first ball of the 31st over. Boult’s delivery down the leg side was collected by wicketkeeper Latham. The New Zealand players appealed for an out, but the umpires signaled it as wide. Nonetheless, Latham opted for a review, and the replay clearly showed contact between the ball and bat, leading to the decision being overturned.

Stokes and Buttler boost England’s total

Stokes concluded his innings with a phenomenal score of 182 off just 124 balls, which included 15 fours and 9 maximums before being dismissed by Ben Lister. A late cameo from Jos Buttler (38) further bolstered England’s total, allowing them to surpass the 350-run mark.

Also READ: ENG vs NZ: Here is why Ben Stokes apologized to Jason Roy after smashing England’s highest individual ODI score

Boult wraps up the innings

In the last ball of the 47th over by Boult, Sam Curran launched the ball towards the deep cover region, where it fell safely into the hands of Conway. The left-arm pacer claimed his final wicket by going around the wicket and delivering a full, straight delivery that Atkinson attempted to sweep but ended up offering a catch to the fielder. England was bowled out for 368 in 48.1 overs.

Here’s the video: 

Boult’s record-breaking feat

Boult secured a five-wicket haul, marking his sixth such achievement in ODI cricket for New Zealand. This outstanding feat propelled him past the legendary Sir Richard Hadlee, who held the record with five five-wicket hauls.

Glenn Phillips stands tall amidst New Zealand’s struggles

In pursuit of 369 runs, New Zealand’s batters encountered a challenging task as Reece Topley and Chris Woakes wreaked havoc at the top of the order. Woakes, in particular, proved devastating by claiming three of the first four wickets, pushing New Zealand into a dire situation at 37/4

Glenn Phillips and Daryl Mitchell briefly steadied the innings, adding 33 runs for the fifth wicket before Curran accounted for Mitchell’s dismissal. Amongst the New Zealand batters, only Phillips appeared at ease, contributing a well-earned 72 runs from 76 deliveries. However, the remainder of the batting lineup struggled to make an impact, resulting in their eventual collapse for a total of 187 runs. England emerged victorious by a commanding margin of 181 runs, seizing a 2-1 lead in the four-game ODI series.

Also READ: ODI World Cup 2023: Ben Stokes unveils a major revelation about his comeback after record-breaking knock against New Zealand

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