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Brilliant Bairstow fires England to series victory over New Zealand


Ben Stokes scored an unbeaten 75 in England’s victory oaver New Zealand in the second Test

Jonny Bairstow blasted England to a five-wicket win over New Zealand on the final day of the second Test at Trent Bridge on Tuesday as the home side won a series for the first time since January 2021.

England chased down 299 thanks to an astonishing display of raw power from Bairstow, who hit 136 off just 92 balls, and captain Ben Stokes, who hammered an unbeaten 75.

The win gives England an unassailable 2-0 lead in the three-match series after their five-wicket victory in the first Test at Lord’s.

“It was good craic (fun) wasn’t it?” said the 32-year-old Yorkshireman. “When you’ve got yourself in you’ve just got to capitalise.

“I know we were three or four wickets down but we were brave enough to take the biggest challenge on and we took it straight from the horns.”

“When he has those eyes you’re not stopping him. You let him go on and do what he needs to do.”

At tea, all four results were still possible, with England needing another 160 runs with six wickets left.

It was the highest successful final-innings run chase in a Test at Trent Bridge, surpassing the previous record of 284 set by England against New Zealand in 2004.

Their desire for relentlessly positive and aggressive cricket has been embraced by England and they will seek to sweep the series in the final Test at Headingley from June 23.

– Bairstow onslaught –

The home side seized their chance in stunning style after bowling out the Kiwis for 284 in the first session of the final day. Mitchell top-scored with an unbeaten 62 and last man Trent Boult added a useful 17.

Swatting Boult for six in the next over, Bairstow was propelling the England charge as 42 came off the first 16 balls of the evening session.

Stokes was struggling with a knee injury but kept blasting away, smashing another four after a visit from the physio.

When Bairstow finally departed to a raucous standing ovation after being caught behind off Boult, England were nearly home, inspired by his breathtaking performance.

smg/jw/jc

Originally published as Brilliant Bairstow fires England to series victory over New Zealand



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