A maiden T20 half-century for James Vince has helped England to any easy opening win on tour to New Zealand, chasing down the hosts middling total with ease.
Bowling first in the sun and playing three debutants didn’t appear to impose much concern for England, but it was the classy orthodox batting of Vince that ensured a comfortable win chasing a total of 155.
Outclassing every other batsman with ease, Vince notched his maiden T20 half-century and never looked back. Hitting seven fours and two sixes in his 59, the offside dominant innings featured a strike rate that far outclassed any other, and by the time he was dismissed, the English were in the position to close out.
Thanks all to Vince and a well-executed bowling plan earlier in the day to restrict a usually powerful New Zealand batting arsenal.
Blackcaps Post Medicore Total After Top Order Fails
153 is the perfect definition of what’s referred to as a “middling” type of total.
A slow start, thanks to another top order-pairing fail, put New Zealand behind the running early. From there, most of the innings was a battle to break even and add any extras that were offered as Ross Taylor anchored the innings for the umpteenth time with all his skills of management on show.
In the end, Taylor’s 44 runs got New Zealand closer to the ideal total than what would’ve been possible without him, but there were two other batsmen of note that stood out.
Tim Seifert and Daryl Mitchell are both likely to go to the Twenty20 World Cup next year, but the 2019/20 summer presents a big chance to make that much more of a reality. Valuable contributions of 32 and 30 respectively will help the cause with both Seifert and Mitchell showing their worth, Seifert as first drop and Mitchell as a finisher down the order.
England’s execution with the ball was superb, debutant Sam Curran taking a wicket in his first spell as a T20 bowler. The field placing on a large ground well-placed, but what would’ve pleased captain Eoin Morgan most was how each time New Zealand began to find some momentum, his bowlers managed to stop the flow by rebounding with well-executed and regular change-ups in delivery style.
James Vince Ensures England Stay Ahead Of The Game
Started by Jonny Bairstow and David Malan, the English batters were able to find the boundaries that New Zealand couldn’t to start their chase.
Bowling their two spinners in partnership, Santner broke through to break the momentum but with heaps of batting to come, England wasn’t daunted by the eight-run RPO as the New Zealand spinners ticked through the overs quickly.
The lack of fear showed as Bairstow and James Vince waited for the bad balls and put them away, keeping just ahead of New Zealand in terms of the run rate and navigating the first part of the chase to perfection.
Could a great outfield running catch by Martin Guptill to dismiss Bairstow turn the tide?
Not with James Vince at the crease. The experienced, orthodox style of England’s number three batsman played some beautiful shots, backing up his boundaries with smartly placed little dabs to ensure a follow-up single. Outscoring any other batsman on the day, Vince’s maiden T20 half-century all but took the game away from New Zealand but his dismissal just kept a little intrigue.
Eoin Morgan, with all the time and all the tricks, put together 34 to see England home, taking a 1-0 series lead to kick off the tour.