New Zealand elected to bowl first in Cardiff’s first match of this tournament. The Kiwis got an early breakthrough in the eighth over when Adam Milne bowled Jason Roy (13), whose bad patch continues. There was controlled bowling from Tim Southee at the other end.
The partnership between Alex Hales and Joe Root helped England again. They made a 87-run stand for the second wicket. Hales scored his second fifty of the tournament, 56 off 62 balls with 3 fours and 2 sixes.
English captain Eoin Morgan failed today scoring just 13 runs. Root and Ben Stokes had 54-run partnership for the fourth wicket. Root was brilliant again as he made 64 runs from 65 deliveries including 4 fours and 2 sixes.
Stokes fell short of a half-century by two runs as he made 48 from 53 with 4 fours and 2 sixes. England were in pressure after losing key wickets.
Jos Buttler stood up big time for England and he was accompanied by Liam Plunkett. They added 59 runs in five overs for the eighth wicket partnership. Plunkett contributed 15 off 10 with a four and six each. Buttler scored a cameo fifty. He smashed unbeaten 61 runs off 48 balls hitting just 2 fours and 2 sixes.
England failed to play full 50 overs but did manage to cross 300. The hosts posted 310 in 49.3 overs. Adam Milne and Corey Anderson scalped three wickets each despite being at the expensive side.
England 310 allout in 49.3 overs (Root 64, Buttler 61*; Anderson 3/55 Milne 3/79)
New Zealand require 311 runs to win.
-Ruffin, Correspondent, bdcrictime.com