England wins super over thriller to secure NZ T20I series

Chris Jordan's three-ball 12 with the bat at the end of England's run-chase forced a super over and the same player defended 17 off six balls.

Chris Jordan's three-ball 12 with the bat took the match to a super over.   -  AP

England beat New Zealand in a thrilling Super Over finish to the rain-reduced Twenty20 cricket international Sunday, clinching a 3-2 win in the five-match series.

The teams were tied when England replied with 146-7 to New Zealand’s 146-5 in a match shortened by heavy rain to 11 overs-per-side.

Jonny Bairstow and captain Eion Morgan took 17 runs from England’s Super Over, bowled by New Zealand captain Tim Southee, before Martin Guptill, Tim Seifert and Colin de Grandhomme managed only eight from New Zealand’s single over.

The match was reminiscent of the World Cup final between the teams in June when England won on a count back of boundaries after being tied at the end of 50 overs and again after the one-over eliminator.

MATCH SCORECARD

This time England’s performance in the tiebreaker was decisive.

Bairstow and Morgan both hit sixes to set New Zealand a chase for 18 runs, a total which was challenging even on the postage stamp boundaries of Eden Park.

New Zealand made the unusual decision to nominate wicketkeeper Tim Seifert to take the first ball of its Super Over, bowled by Chris Jordan. Seifert took two, left a wide, hit four and had a dot ball before falling to a brilliant catch by Morgan.

With New Zealand needing 10 runs from the last two balls Guptill could only manage a single from the first ball he faced and the match was over.

Bairstow was Man of the Match for his 47 from 18 balls which helped England match New Zealand’s formidable 11-over total and for his contribution in the Super Over.

After England won a rain-delayed toss and sent New Zealand into bat, Martin Guptill blasted 50 from 20 balls to launch the home side towards a competitive total. New Zealand was 37-0 after only two overs and reached 100 in only 7.3 overs.

England, in contrast, made a poor beginning, losing Tom Banton and James Vince within the first seven balls.

Bairstow’s innings put it back in the match and England came into the last over needing 16 runs to win.

Jordan struck a crucial six from the bowling of Jimmy Neesham, then hit a four from the last ball to tie the scores and send the match into the one-over eliminator.